SOUTHEND Saxons’ director of rugby Josh Ward felt his side produced an ‘awful’ performance in their 25-12 defeat to Brentwood.

The setback saw Southend slip to fourth in the London One North standings.

And Ward offered an honest assessment of his side’s display at Warners Bridge.

“Saturday was a simple one for me,” said Ward.

“Brentwood were outstanding and we were awful.

“I’m not going to sugar-coat things at tougher times, we’re an honest group and not much needs to be said after that one.

“We had some good moments naturally but on the whole they played with energy, tempo and desire, three things we lacked.

“We were second best in every area which as I said is extremely frustrating as it’s a mentality thing.

“We are training throughout the festive period which is needed and one thing I know about our group is that it is filled with character and good guys.”

Brentwood’s win pushed them up to second in the standings but Southend are one of three teams level on points with them.

And Ward is looking forward to resuming the season in 2020.

“There are four teams locked on 47 points now, 12 rounds remain and we are in the race,” said Ward.

“Our support didn’t have much to shout about but they were excellent and will continue to play a massive role throughout the run-in.

“We will be back in 2020.”

Ben Law and Fraser Banks both bagged tries for Southend in Saturday’s clash.

But Brentwood proved too strong and moved clear in the second half to condemn Saxons to defeat in their final outing before the Christmas break.

Southend Saxons: Ramsey, Banks, Bennett, Vaughan, Richards, Lloyd, Branch, Reeman, Bevan, Armitage, Newton, O’Kill, Gemmell, Law, Wagstaff. Replacements: Smith, Morrison & Day.