BOURNEMOUTH head coach Will Croker highlighted how Lions had conquered “exhausting” conditions to grind out a 13-7 victory at Camborne.

The scheduled kick off was brought forward as the surface absorbed a deluge at Cranberry Road, with doubts over whether the fixture should have taken place.

But Lions kept their focus and raced into a 13-0 half-time lead with conditions in their favour.

They dug in during the second period to maintain their push for promotion from South West Premier.

Croker told the Daily Echo: “We had a conversation with their coaches and, if it hadn't been so far away, we would have almost certainly called it off.

“Most of the pitch was standing water. When it was raining, you could see the drops bouncing on the pitch.

“Having made the trip and spent money on the overnight accommodation, we weren’t going to go back.

“We spoke to the referee and asked whether we could bring the game forward half-an-hour. Not because we wanted to get away early, just because any more rain would have taken it past being playable.

“There were 32 scrummages in the game and it was incredible discipline from both sides that only three of them had to be reset.”

Long-serving scrum-half Sam Hardcastle scored the only try for the Chapel Gate outfit just before the interval.

The rest of the visitors’ points came from the boot of makeshift fly-half Grant Hancox, who had switched positions to cover for the injured Adam Davies.

Croker added: “I was proud of the way the boys played because it showed, when we have to, we can play to the conditions.

“When we got to the ground, we made some jokes about it. We said how a couple of our smaller players would have sunk if they had been playing there!

“But when we got about an hour from kick off, the guys just snapped into it and realised they had a job to do.

“It was one of those days where you knew what you were going to get. You were never going to score lots of tries and it was probably going to come down to penalty count and discipline.

“Without going very far, we kept the ball for long periods and that made it very difficult for Camborne. Defending in those conditions is exhausting.

"We scored all our points in the first half when we had the ball and the weather conditions. In the second half, we were playing into a gale and it was very difficult to exit.

“If you managed to get a clearance kick away, instead of making the usual 40 or 60 metres, you were making 20. It made it very difficult to get out.”

Victory, coupled with Newton Abbot’s 26-25 defeat at Cleve, saw Lions climb to second in the table, 11 points behind leaders Dings Crusaders.

Bournemouth host Cleve at Chapel Gate on Saturday (2pm). Cleve beat Lions 28-25 in September.