BASILDON’S survival hopes suffered a huge blow as they sunk to a 24-17 defeat against relegation rivals Ruislip.

Basildon took the lead in the sixth minute when prop Jim Harman crashed over after some good work from the whole pack.

But Ruislip came back strongly with two penalties in the next five minutes.

The rest of the first half was a dour affair with Basildon controlling things up front but Ruislip looked dangerous in the backs and scored a very good try on the stroke of half time to lead 11-5.

However, Basildon looked to have taken control of the match 17 minutes into the second period with Harman scoring a second try and then number 8 Luke Crowhurst burst through to score.

winger Brad Johnson converted to make it 17-11 with 20 minutes to go but Ruislip replied with a penalty and the best try of the match to win the game and move above both Basildon and Rochford at the foot of the table.