Worthing Raiders head coach Jody Levett hailed the spirit his team showed as they bagged a last-gasp National 2 South triumph over fifth-placed Redruth at Roundstone Lane on Saturday.
Skipper Liam Perkins’ try a minute from the end – the last of 13 scored in a thrilling match – edged Worthing to a 46-43 bonus-point victory over high-flying Redruth.
The win was enough to move Raiders up a place to seventh in the standings, ensuring they started 2018 at Roundstone Lane with a maximum five-point success.
Levett felt the free-scoring match was a great advert for rugby but admitted his relief as Worthing were on the right end of the final score.
He said: “If you look at our last games, Wimbledon, Old Redcliffians and Broadstreet – all at home – they’ve all been high-scoring games.
“We’ve always said that we are capable of scoring those points – which we showed once again against Redruth – what we are doing is conceding some poor tries and that’s something that must be addressed.
“What a great, exciting game. Rugby was the winner, I’ll take five points at home against Redruth.
“For us to play with the spirit we did at the end, scoring, then letting them score but to finish with a score was hugely positive. Again we score last, so happy days. We looked at this game against Redruth as a real target. Particularly as we had Redingensians away last week, then travel to second-placed Chinnor on Saturday and a trip to Cinderford to come as well.
“The guys are excited and looking forward to challenging some of the top teams. We played the lower half before Christmas, now we are playing that top half. Our defence must be upped in order to stay in games longer.”
Of the six tries Redruth registered, five of those came from driving mauls.
It was a real contrast of styles in how the two teams played. Redruth stole the win with the last play when the sides met at Roundstone Lane last season, so Levett was happy his team managed to do the same this time around.
He said: “It was two completely different styles of play. It was one of those, we kicked the ball into touch, they then gain 20 metres and end up scoring. They kick-off make a mistake, we get the ball back and score.
“It was a lot of that. When there are two contrasting styles, they are always going to do what they do and we had to work hard to stop it, which we struggled with. We then continued doing what we usually do, which they struggled to deal with.”
Raiders face another tricky trip as they go to second-placed Chinnor on Saturday but Levett sees no reason why they should fear them.
“We’ll go there with belief and the attitude we can score four tries,” Levett said.