Coach Craig Chalmers has warned some Esher players are playing for their Molesey Road lives over the closing weeks of the campaign.
A half-time dressing down and the introduction of subs Neil Sweeney and Peter Synott triggered a thrilling comeback at Loughborough Students on Saturday.
Chalmers’ men came back from 21-3 down at the break to win 24-21, thanks to second half tries from Michael Macfarlane, Andy Wright and Spencer Sutherland.
Esher, without a game this weekend, have slipped out of the National League One title race in 2014, having secured only three wins from seven games since the turn of the year.
They visit struggling Tynedale next weekend and Chalmers has told his players their futures are at stake.
“To be 21-0 down before getting a penalty late in the first half was a big deficit,” he said.
“The message from Ricky and myself at half-time was just a few home truths. It was more than just a talk, but the players responded fantastically well.
“It wasn’t a nice position to be in, but in the second half we cut out those mistakes.
“We are capable of getting back into the match from so far behind against any team.
“I thought Peter Synott and Neil Sweeney came off the bench and played a huge part in our defence, Sweeney in particular came on and got us on the front foot.
“We’re looking to finish as high as possible in the table, whether that’s third or even second, you never know.
“Our players are playing for contracts and for pride, so we want to finish the season strongly.”
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