COLCHESTER Rugby Club recorded their first win of 2017 - a crucial 31-18 success against Southend Saxons at Mill Road.

It was only their second victory of the season and snapped a seven-game losing run.

They remain second from bottom in National League Three but they are now level on points with their Essex neighbours.

Southend moved into an early 6-0 lead but the All Blacks responded with a try from Joe McMillan.

James Crozier was unable to add the conversion but soon had another chance, which he duly took, after a try from Rob Pickard.

There was more to come from the hosts when Danny Whiteman's try was converted by Crozier for a half-time lead of 19-6.

Southend reduced the deficit from a penalty try but Te Albert's first try for Colchester made it 24-13.

Damien Brambley then added his side's final try, converted by Crozier, and although Southend added to their tally, the final score was 31-18.

For full coverage of the game, see Tuesday's Gazette.