DUDLEY Kingswinford Director of Rugby Gordon Bannatyne admitted his side did enough to have beaten Luctonians this week instead of suffering a 30-24 reverse - writes Nick Pullen.

Bannatyne claimed: “I was delighted with the performance, but disappointed with the result, but the signs still remain very positive.

“The sides we’ve come up against so far this season have all been unbeaten, so it’s been a test of character and that’s what we’ve had to contend with”.

Hopes were high the DK’s could register their first success of the season against Luctonians, especially going into the second half when they held a 19-11 advantage.

The DK’s led 14-11 at the interval thanks to a couple of tries from prop Steve Blackburn and winger Liam Marshall, both of which were converted by fly half Gareth Bown.

Luctonians kept in contention with two penalties from full back John Morris and a try from winger Drew Cheshire.

Back row player Matt Squires then made it 19-11 for the DK’s with an unconverted try just two minutes on resumption of second half exchanges, but that only proved the signal for Luctonians to cut loose with three tries in the space of 11 minutes, through Jimmy Norris, Will Burton and Paul Hulland, Morris converting two of them to put the Herefordshire side 30-19 ahead.

Although the DK’s tried to stage a grandstand finish and clawed a try back through hooker Luke Greenwood, the Luctonians defence held firm, even though they were reduced to 14 when second row Alex Davidson was yellow carded.

Bannatyne confirmed: “Luctonians upped the anti for that 10 minute period and then defended well when we tried to get back at them and kept us out”, The DK’s travel to Darlington Mowden Park this Saturday, who have won three and lost once so far this season.

Bannatyne doesn’t anticipate many changes to the DK line-up after what he described as a commendable performance against Luctonians.