UCS Old Boys miss the chance to move off the bottom after losing 12-point lead

Tom Arnold (left) set up UCS Old Boys' first try and scored the second himself. Picture: Nick Cook

Tom Arnold (left) set up UCS Old Boys' first try and scored the second himself. Picture: Nick Cook - Credit: Archant

UCS Old Boys missed the chance to climb off the bottom of the table and overtake relegation rivals Wasps in Hert/Middlesex Division One after throwing away a 12-point lead against Barnet Elizabethans.

The Old Boys made a strong start, with Tom Arnold off-loading to Chris Bean, who galloped over the line inside the first five minutes – and Arnold then touched down himself, while Dan Stewart kicked the conversion to leave the visitors 12-0 up after 20 minutes.

UCS, who were dominating in the scrum, got another boost when their opponents were reduced to 14 men, and David Njoroge was stopped just short of the line.

However, ill-discipline began to set in and it was the Old Boys who ended the half a man down, allowing their hosts the opportunity to score two soft tries from line-out mauls and narrow the gap to 12-10 at the interval.

Barnet went on to take the lead with another try after the break, and although UCS spent 15 minutes hammering on the door as they battled to regain the lead, they were ultimately defeated 15-12 in their final game of 2016.

Meanwhile, Dave Francis scored a hat-trick for Hendon against joint league leaders Old Streetonians, but he ended up on the losing defeat in a 29-19 defeat.

The Dons exchanged blows with their hosts in the first half and, despite spending 10 minutes in the sin-bin, Francis touched down twice to give the visitors a 12-10 lead after half an hour.

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But Streetonians then scored three tries without reply before Francis completed his treble.

Seventh-placed Hendon visit Barnet Elizabethans, who also have 17 points, this Saturday.

Elsewhere, Haringey Rhinos suffered a 79-0 defeat away against title contenders Watford in Herts/Middlesex Division Two.