SEDGLEY Park general manager Geoff Roberts believes it will take time for the National Two North table to right itself.

The Park Lane men are sixth in the table after losing 46-24 at second-placed Tynedale on Saturday.

It was the Tigers' second defeat in their opening five matches after also going down at fifth-placed South Leicester.

Roberts' men have been handed a difficult start to the campaign, having already played four of the top five teams and only one side – Sheffield Tigers – in the bottom half.

That tough run continues this month, with a hat-trick of mid-table sides – Macclesfield, Otley and Luctonians – to come before they end the month at current leaders Stourbridge.

By the end of that sequence they will have played all the other teams in the top nine of the current table despite only being 10 games into the season.

Roberts accepts it could leave the Tigers playing catch-up, but he is confident they will be in the mix for promotion once all the top teams have played each other.

"We might be sixth but we have played four of the five teams above us," he said.

"Some of those teams above us have only played against sides in the bottom half, apart from their match against Sedgley.

"The fixture computer can throw up anomalies like that meaning the table at this time of year can be misleading.

"We have also played three of our five games away from home, whereas other teams will have had three home games.

"So there are a number of factors that can have a bearing on the table.

"I don't think we will get a real feeling of which way the season is heading until maybe a few weeks down the line."

While the table may be misleading, Roberts admits his Tigers side did not do themselves justice on Saturday.

They were 15-0 down after the opening quarter-of-an-hour and while Sedgley did at one point close the gap to 25-19 early in the second half, an unanswered three-try blast from the home side took the game away from them again.

Rob Holloway did at least run in a last minute try to earn the Tigers a bonus point, adding to a penalty try and earlier scores from Ben Black and Andy Riley.

"We haven't won at Tynedale's home ground since 1996 so we always knew it was going to be a tough day and that's how it turned out," said Roberts.

"The stats told the whole story – we lost possession of the ball 18 times, that's a hell of a lot.

"Funnily enough, the forwards had a decent game. We smashed them at the scrum but maybe didn't get the number of penalties you would expect.

"What killed us though was the number of times we gave the ball away, either on impact, out of hand or by sloppy passes.

"We kept getting in behind them but failed to capitalise and were on the back foot once the ball had been turned over.

"Many of their scores came after we had committed men to moves that then broke down.

"It is something that we may have to look at, in away games especially. We like to play good open rugby but maybe we need to look at being tighter away from home."

Sedgley's next match is at home to Macclesfield, who are ninth in the table having struggled since being relegated last season, losing three of their opening five games. The Cheshire outfit remain a dangerous opponent, however, after winning the National Two North title in 2015/16, beating Sedgley into second place.