Tabard are still looking for their first win of 2014 after a late try sent them to a 20-19 defeat at Romford and Gidea Park in London League Two North.
In the wet and blustery conditions Romford had the elements behind them but it was Tabard who put on the early pressure and kept Romford inside their own 22 metre area. Tabard’s superiority had to tell and, eventually, after nine minutes the visitors opened the scoring.
A penalty was awarded just short of the line and flanker Cam O’Connor took it very quickly. A couple of surges to the line were finished off by forward Aaron Pristcott who dived through and touched down. Jack Reilly converted and Tabard were seven points clear.
Then Tabard’s jinx struck again. A probing kick behind Romford was brought back on the wind and their winger scored the converted try. A penalty then put Romford in the lead.
Although the play was not quite as cohesive as at the start, Tabard were still in the game and from a line-out the ball was passed to full-back Elliot Hurrell who made the initial ground before wing Tom King accelerated clear to touch down for the try.
The sides then battled hard for the rest of the half but the teams turned round with Tabard 12-10 ahead.
In the second half the conditions deteriorated but both sides had their good spells before Romford stretched their lead with another penalty.
Reilly put in a deep kick behind the Romford defence and King pursued the ball, fielded it well and touched down in the corner for the converted effort.
With just minutes remaining Tabard looked set for the win but their luck deserted them again. A kick by Romford from deep, was fielded by Tabard but the home players were allowed to tackle the catcher even though they looked offside.
Tabard were then penalised for holding on, Romford used the penalty to gain ground and eventually forced their way over the line with their second row claiming the try.
The conversion proved the difference as Tabard were left to contemplate a frustrating defeat.