Bromsgrove 18, Leicester Lions 39

RELEGATED Bromsgrove produced a stirring second-half fight-back,but it was not enough to prevent defeat in the National Two North.

The Boars were trailing 25-3 at one stage before rallying, but it wasn’t enough to prevent a seventh straight league defeat.

The hosts were the better side in the first half, which they won comfortably, assisted by three yellow cards for Bromsgrove and some obscure refereeing decisions.

It’s tough enough for Town at the moment, but playing with one man short for most of the first half made their task even more difficult.

There was an early exchange of penalties between Jon Boden for Lions and Jon Critchlow for Bromsgrove, but once the Finstall Park outfit were reduced to 14 men on 10 minutes, the visitors took advantage and scored three unanswered tries through John Williamson, Robert Young and Dan Campbell, two of which were converted.

Things were looking pretty grim for Grove at half-time, 25-3 down.

But great credit to the struggling home side, once they were back to full strength they got themselves back into the match, with a try on 48 minutes for the hard-working Sol Dacres, followed five minutes later by another for Aaron Higgins.

Higgins’ score was converted and another Critchlow penalty saw Town within one score.

Bromsgrove kept pushing for the score to put them level, but unfortunately pushed too hard and a pass that shouldn’t have been made was intercepted and fly half Adam Greendale went the length of the pitch to score and put the game beyond the away team.

The low-on-confidence side saw their heads go down and Leicester rubbed salt in the wounds with another try in the last minute.

Defeat ended any lingering hopes of the Boars ending the season third from bottom.

They can no longer catch Sheffield Tigers, who are also already relegated, but boast a 21 point lead over division whipping boys Dudley Kingswinford.

Bromsgrove face a tough task in their penultimate league clash when they take on promotion-chasing Stourbridge Stourton Park on Saturday (3pm ko). The Black Country side are still in need of wins to secure a top two finish and will be keen to avenge last season’s shock home defeat.