BARNS Green staged a magnificent recovery but saw their hopes of promotion from rugby’s Sussex 2 West fade with a 43-33 defeat to Bognor III.
Trailing 43-5 and fighting among themselves, the Green picked themselves up in the second half and very nearly pulled off a stunning result.
A string of unavailabilities and injuries meant Green were short of 12 first teamers - and combined with the appearance of five of Bognor’s first team players on the opposition, added up to a tough afternoon.
The early exchanges saw the Green struggle to cope with the hosts’ powerful runners, their number eight, openside and inside centre cutting the visitors open with ease as they raced into a 17 point lead.
Sam Callaghan scored a hat trick of tries in the secon dhalf, but Bognor already had a comfortable cushion and the Green were even denied a bonus point at the end.
Captain Potter said: “We were stood behind the posts at 43-5 down bickering like a bunch of children, what followed was 30 minutes of the most enjoyable rugby I have played in a long time.
“Some of the skill, precision and pace we played at in those 30 minutes saw us raise a few eyebrows in the home ranks. Who knows if we had longer in the game we may have got that bonus point we deserved.
“I’m only perhaps a little bit disappointed that the boys sat off them in the first half and didn’t believe in their own ability, it was clear for all to see what happens when they do.”