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Warlingham get undone by a much improved Tunbridge outfit
There was little to cheer for Warlingham after they missed a chance to climb closer to safety in London Division South East after a 33-16 defeat at home to Tunbridge Wells.
Coming off the back of two wins either side of Christmas, Warlingham were hopeful of continuing the run against a side just two spots above them, and who they had beaten earlier in the season.
However, Tunbridge had recruited and were a much more skilful side, taking five points from the game to climb up the league ladder.
Moreover, for the second match in succession Warlingham were denied a perfectly good try when the referee indicated he did not see the ball touched down despite the visitor's touch judge indicating the score was valid.
With four international players on the pitch - Warlingham fielding Finnish and Belgian players, and Tunbridge Spanish and Maltese internationals, there was an extra edge to proceedings.
After an early penalty miss, Warlingham's scrum half Joe McEvoy made a clean break from a ruck and the ensuing scrum and maul led to the dependable flanker Tom Street burrowing over for an unconverted try.
The lead was soon erased when Tunbridge counter attacked and a deft cross lick found their winger who scored the visitors first converted try.
Warlingham then regained the lead with a well struck penalty from McEvoy after the visitors had been marched back 10 metres for dissent at a penalty.
The Tunbridge backs looked dangerous at every phase and a number eight move from a scrum close to the Warlingham line resulted in their second converted try.
Warlingham full back Harry Wrightson left the field injured, closely followed by lock Luke Delderfield and Street.
McvEvoy slotted a second penalty just before the half time break but a missed tackle in midfield led to Tunbridge's third converted try before the controversial denial of a score by winger Alex Skinner who had chased down a kick ahead.
The denied score was to be critical when number eight Ahola scored Warlingham second try as they would have regained the lead.
Warlingham pressed through charges from Zack King and substitute Mike Fair, but the visitor's defence held and when the home side knocked on, the ball was scooped up by a Tunbridge back who sprinted down the wing for their fourth, bonus-point try.
Fly half James Agate found a gap in the tight defence, kicked ahead and was clear for the line.
However, an unlucky tip forward denied a losing bonus-point try for being within seven points.
As Warlingham played catch-up rugby Tunbridge broke away and their fifth try brought the game to a close.
Warlingham: Nunn, Abou-Zeid, Scutt, L Delderfield,Robson, Street, King, Ahola, McEvoy, Agate, Osborne,Saffery, Davies, Skinner, Wrightson, Fair, Boufaied, Kozminski.
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