Wymondham sink to bottom of table

Wymondham 18, Bancroft 35

RUGBY: Wymondham's hopes of a first away victory were left in tatters after they put in an unsatisfactory performance against bottom club Bancroft.

It gifted the Essex side their first victory of the season and they swapped places in the table. Now it is the Red and Blacks who sit at the foot of the table and need to start playing to their full potential if they wish to preserve their place in London Three.

Even the returning Barry O'Sullivan, Justin Loveridge and Chris Brown and inspiring performances from Colts skipper David Blake and veteran Mike Rout could not rouse the whole team from a lacklustre performance.

Jon Loades tore his hamstring in the warm-up meaning a hasty reshuffle and things got worse when, two minutes into the game, Bancroft's hat-trick hero, wing Paul Robinson, crossed the line. Wymondham were clearly not at their best and several errors kept the home side on the front foot and Robinson extended the lead when his penalty, after striking the upright, dropped fortuitously over.

Some good work from all the Wymondham forwards kept the ball alive after Bancroft had fluffed a 22 restart. Chris Brown crossed the line providing James Wyatt with an easy conversion, but this was as good as it got in the first half. Two further tries from Robinson and some dreadful missed tackles by Wymondham saw them trailing 23-10 at half-time.

In the second half Wyatt got his second penalty and then Robert Trounce rounded off some excellent forwards' driving play, with young Blake leading by example, culminating in some slick handling through the backs Wyatt failed with the conversion.

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But Wymondham's hopes were short-lived, as once again the wheels seemed to fall off. Bancroft's Francois Nell slipped around the front of a line-out to score a soft try, three minutes later Wymondham's failure to 'nail the man' once again allowed Gavin Boston a score between the sticks and Robinson moved his tally to 25 points.

Wymondham ended a thoroughly miserable afternoon with 14 men when O'Sullivan was controversially yellow carded for a late tackle.

A club spokesman said: 'There's nothing wrong with the team other than confidence and self belief, we showed in patches that we are capable of playing good rugby but it needs to be for 80 minutes.

'All is not lost and one good result could lift Wymondham four places. The next few fixtures are vital, beginning with next weekend's visitors South Woodham Ferrers.'