Although this was technically a home game, waterlogged pitches forced Bognor to travel to Old Blues for the second time this season and they paid a harsh price - losing their London three south west clash 19-6.
Having managed to play only twice in the last seven weeks, and with limited training facilities, Bognor took a long time to work their way into the game and never really looked like winning against a resurgent side.
The defeat means there is now very little between the clubs in the bottom half of the table and Bognor are well aware they need at least another couple of wins to be safe from relegation.
Bognor kicked off with a strong wind at their backs, determined to make the most of the expected territorial advantage. The home side, however, were much quicker out of the blocks, disrupting the visitors’ scrums and reacting sharply to loose ball situations.
A penalty for offside gave Old Blues the lead after five minutes and the lead was doubled ten minutes later following a similar offence.
Bognor enjoyed some good territory but they were unable to retain possession.
Rob Parry narrowed the gap with a well-struck penalty from 35 metres but Bognor were struck two blows in quick succession – firstly Harry Dyer was harshly yellow-carded for going in at the side, then hooker Mark Ubsdell retired with an arm injury.
Down to 14 men, Bognor managed to draw level with another Parry penalty before another surprising yellow card saw Nigel Mitchell trudge to the bin.
Old Blues pressed hard and looked certain to score only for Parry to stick out a hand from an offside position to prevent a certain score.
The three points were taken and the home side ended the half with a three-point lead.
The Blues’ confidence was reinforced when they began the half strongly and hammered away at the Bognor defence, and a well-worked try rewarded the home side’s efforts.
Blues extended their lead to 13 points with another penalty before Bognor’s forwards finally came into their own, dominating the scrums and driving deep into the heart of home territory.
Finally, Dyer released Rob Legge just two metres out but, unfortunately, the scrum- half dropped the ball over the line and Bognor’s only real try-scoring opportunity of the match was lost.
Bognor host Old Mid-Whitgiftians this Saturday (2.30pm).
BOGNOR: Gibbs, Riggall, Brock, Burgess, Shergold, Parry, Legge, Morgan, Ubsdell, Angelou, Misselbrook, Flinn, N Mitchell, Dyer, Balchin. Replacements: P Mitchell, Hornibrook, Wolf.