Sedgley Park’s miserable start to 2024 continued with a 36-17 defeat at Leicester Lions in National one last weekend.

The result means the winless run was extended but while disappointed, coach Steve Hazzelby remains defiant ahead of a blank weekend for the Tigers.

He said: “We are obviously disappointed with how the results have gone for us since January and need to turn this around very quickly.

“We are currently ninth in the table but only five points behind the teams above us.

“We have to improve our conversion rate when we are dominating play and this will inevitably bring the wins.

“The effort and commitment of the players cannot be questioned but this has to be channelled into the performances.

“A number of bad results do not make a bad team and we are confident that we can return to winning ways.”

In difficult conditions on Saturday, Sedgley started strongly, dominating most aspects of play, building phases and keeping possession well but just lacking that final execution that would have put points on the board.

They went ahead with a well-taken penalty from fly-half Warren Seals after 10 minutes, but it was the home side who scored the first try when their scrum-half broke open from a scrum on Sedgley’s ‘22’ and touched down under the posts.

They then went further ahead with a second try five minutes later after a powerful drive from their forwards. Then six minutes after that they added a penalty to give them a commanding 17-3 lead at half time.

Leicester Lions had their tails up and started the second half strongly with a third converted try just three minutes into the half after a sharp line break from their backs.

Then, five minutes later, they put the game out of reach with a fourth and bonus-point try to make it 29-3.

A big reaction was needed from the Tigers and it came with a well-worked try for prop Danny Rylance after strong driving from the forwards. Seals added the conversion with 20 minutes to go.

However, the home team continued to pressure Sedgley defences, looking to move the ball wide at every opportunity and they got their fifth try in the 60th minute.

The Tigers hit back with a lovely try for young winger Will Bradley, converted by Seals, but the game ended in a sixth defeat in the new year for the Tigers.

They return to action on Saturday, March 9, at home against Darlington Mowden Park.