HORSHAM RFC saw their four-game winning run come to an end with a 30-10 defeat to league leaders Crowborough.
With Horsham also set to play Crows in the Sussex Cup, the game was turned into a league and cup double because of the disruption from the freezing conditions, making it doubly disappointing to lose.
The game was much more of a contest then the final score suggests, swelled by a try in the first minute and two late scores as hosts Horsham finished the game with 14 men.
Both Matt Stone and James Whiting were yellow carded at the end of the match in separate incidents which left the green and whites a man down for the last 20 minutes. And with Crows talented No. 7 avoiding any punishment for an apparent spear tackle on Sam Bell early in the match, coach Nick Stocker was unimpressed with the man in the middle.
He said: ““The referee was poor all game, he struggled to keep up with play and was a little out of his depth.”
Still Stocker was pleased with the performance of his players against a side tipped for promotion.
He said: “The game was massively closer then the score suggests. With it being a double header it was a chance to put one over the promotion favourites and book ourselves a Sussex Cup final but unfortunately it wasn’t to be.
“They are a very good side, very strong in most departments, however we felt we matched them in almost every area, and just a lack of concentration at the start and end of the game cost us.”
Matt Brown scored all of Horsham’s points, scoring and converting a try and slotting over a penalty as Horsham stayed in touch with their visitors until their late flurry.