Towcestrians produced a superb fightback as they claimed a share of the spoils in a 38-38 draw at Guildford in the London & SE Premier.
Tows went behind early on, with a converted try from the home team putting them 7-0 up.
Tows responded straight from the kick-off, as centre Wes McGimpsey scored out wide.
A turnover at a scrum saw Guildford score their second converted try before Tows No.8 Jamie Warr collected his first try of the day, snaffling a loose pass.
Ben Roe converted to narrow the gap once more.
A lineout drive put the Surrey team further ahead, but Warr’s second try and Roe’s conversion levelled it up.
Guildford finished the half with another lineout drive to score after some stout Tows defence.
The second half saw the well drilled Guildford pack, coached by Harlequins players Dave Ward and Kyle Sinckler, extend the lead further with two similar catch-and-drive tries from lineouts.
That seemed set to make the game safe at 38-19, but Tows dug deep and found a second wind, lifted by some brilliant defensive efforts from Will Dunkley, young No.7 Tom Threlfall and replacement hooker Harry Knibbs.
Tows went on the attack to seek something from the game and a deliberate knock down in midfield was rewarded with a penalty try and bonus point for Tows.
It also resulted in a red card for Guildford’s ex-Tows player, Luke Rust.
Tows continued to attack against 14 men and a sustained period of pressure led to Warr claiming his hat-trick try to get to seven points behind.
Guildford were awarded a penalty in front of the posts to guarantee the win but chose to kick to the corner and lost possession.
This allowed Tows to bring the ball downfield and lay siege to the home team’s line, and, with minutes ticking away, scrum-half Ronnie Speakman spotted a gap to run in and score wide out.
With the pressure now on, Tows kicker Roe stepped up and coolly slotted the conversion for a valuable and extremely well-earned draw.
Old Northamptonians 57 Huntingdon 0
BILLY NORTH bagged 22 points as the Old Northamptonians claimed a welcome win in Midlands 1 (East).
North scored two tries and kicked six conversions as the ONs earned their first victory since September.
Aaron Cort, Alex Crofts, Charlie Barker, Drew Hudson, Christopher McKee, Rhys Evans and Fernely Simmonds also scored for ONs.
Meanwhile, Old Northamptonians IIIs went down 48-7 to St Neots IIs.
Scott Oldham scored ONs’ only try, which was converted by Barry Harrower.
Heathens 36 Wellingborough OGs IIs 17
VIOREL MARIN scored twice as Heathens earned victory in an eventful Directors League merit table match against Wellingborough OGs.
Heathens started the game and Marin opened the scoring with an unconverted try.
The game appeared to be fairly evenly balanced but Heathens were able to break through and No.8 Tony Hazell and winger Connor O’Brien went on to score twice more in the first half, with both conversions added by Marin.
Wellingborough scored their opening try with just a minute of the first half to go, but the conversion went begging.
Heathens continued to put pressure on in the second period and Marin and Mark Allison scored twice in the first seven minutes of it.
Quick and observant play from flanker Oskar Gusarovs saw him collect the ball from the rebound off a post and he took it over the line to score on 55 minutes. Marin again converted.
In the last quarter of the game, OGs began to show a more cohesive approach and a converted try after 61 minutes was the result.
Gareth Ivett was shown a yellow card with 12 minutes of the game to play and, down to 14 men, the defence weakened.
Wellingborough scored again with eight minutes remaining and Daniel MacNell was given a yellow card in the final minutes of the game.
But the remaining Heathens players were able to sustain their defensive efforts until the final whistle.
Old Scouts 12 Kettering 34
DEAN LAKE and George Barrett bagged tries and Adam Frost a conversion, but Scouts suffered a home defeat in Midlands 1 (East).