THE front row union proved decisive for Tynedale as they battled to only their third away win of the season at South Leicester on Saturday.

Two tries from bustling tight head prop Ben Haigh, and another from the free scoring hooker David Batey were the cornerstones of a hard earned 35-28 victory over South Leicester in National League Division Two North. 

Games between these sides are always high scoring affairs, and the reverse fixture at Corbridge back in September finished in a 33-33 draw.

And with the teams rattling up another 66 points at Welford Road, the scoreboard operators had no trouble in keeping warm.

Tynedale fly half Rob Parker had another great day with the boot, converting all five Tynedale tries, while leading try scorer Morgan Passman back in action, touching down his 12th try of the season.

It was a tough afternoon for Tynedale, who found themselves 11 points down at one stage of the first half at a windy Welford Road on a wet pitch.

Facing the wind in the first half, Tynedale fell behind after just six minutes, when right wing William Cave touched down after good work from fly half Ben Palmer.

The gap was up to 10 points after 11 minutes when Palmer slotted a penalty, but the Tynedale forwards soon got to work, and the ever alert Batey was the man on the spot to score the try from a well controlled rolling maul with 14 minutes gone. Parker converted for 10-7.

South used the wind well to gain access to the Tynedale 22, where left wing James Neal was able to cross the line for an unconverted try on 17 minutes.

Palmer extended the lead with another penalty soon afterwards to open up an 18-7 advantage, but the home side were then reduced to 14 men when lock Tom Cheney was yellow carded. 

Tynedale used their extra man to good advantage in the ensuing penalty scrum, which ended with Haigh grounding and Parker converting for 18-14 at the break. 

Tynedale got their noses in front for the first time five minutes into the second period when Passman pounced on a sloppy pass, beat his man, and romped over for Parker to convert.

Palmer levelled proceedings again from the tee, but on 54 minutes, more solid work by the forwards saw Haigh force his way over for the bonus point try which Parker improved.

Tynedale stretched further ahead when replacement Ben Bell erupted from a maul 25 metres out, and crashed over the line to give Tynedale a 35-31 advantage.

A strong rally late in the game saw South clinch a deserved bonus point with a try from centre Joviah Pohe.

Second placed Chester are the visitors to Tynedale Park on Saturday, a day which will also see the annual past players' lunch take place.

Tynedale will be without both ace kicker Parker, and two try Haigh who are both absent due to farming commitments in Australia, and the Western Isles, respectively. 

The game will kick off at 2pm.