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Shelford Rugby Club finish positive Regional 1 South East season with home defeat to Tunbridge Wells

Shelford were unable to sign off from their 2022/23 Regional 1 South East campaign with a victory on Saturday.

The Peacocks, who were one of the division’s newly-promoted sides, had been hunting a win to boost their chances of a second-placed finish.

However, up against mid-table visitors Tunbridge Wells at The Davey Field, they ended up losing a high-scoring contest 47-27.

Mike Gillick was among the tries for Shelford. Picture: Richard Marsham
Mike Gillick was among the tries for Shelford. Picture: Richard Marsham

Having fallen behind to a try inside three minutes, Shelford soon got their first points on the board via Lewis Cracknell’s fifth-minute penalty.

The hosts then got themselves in front for the first time with 18 minutes played when a quick maul released Louie Tang and while he was stopped 10 metres out, four phases later Mike Gillick forced his way over and Cracknell added the extras.

However, two tries – one converted – and a penalty handed visiting Tunbridge Wells the ascendancy at the end of the first half, although Shelford kept themselves in contention with another Cracknell penalty.

The two teams traded converted tries in the early part of the second half – Ollie Walker going over for Shelford – before a penalty and another converted try allowed the away team to go 37-20 in front.

Gillick’s second try of the game with six minutes remaining provided Shelford with some hope, but Tunbridge Wells shut it down with a converted try and a final-minute penalty.

Despite the loss, third-placed Colchester also suffered a defeat, meaning they are three points behind Shelford ahead of their season-ending clash at Hertford on Saturday.

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