SOUTHEND Saxons suffered a last gasp 32-31 defeat at Woodford on the opening day of the Regional Two Anglia season.

Saxons fought back from 22-7 down at half-time to lead 31-29 heading into the final seconds of the game.

But Woodford kicked a late penalty to leave Southend co-captain Matt Wagstaff feeling frustrated at the final whistle.

“Last minute penalties are part and parcel of sport,” said Wagstaff.

“The frustrating thing is that too many basic fundamental errors cost us possession and consequently points.

“As a squad and coaching team it wasn’t a performance we are proud of and we feel it doesn’t reflect our strengths and potential.”

John Kenward scored two tries for Southend on his debut while Tom Day, Tom Ramsey and Jack MacVeigh also touched down.

And Wagstaff now wants Saxons to learn lessons from the early setback.

“The determination is there and this is just one game of 22 in the season,” said Wagstaff.

“It gives us a reality check going into the training week and we will do our best to improve our performance for the first home game of the season.

“The errors made are either individual or controllable as a team, so training this week will address these ready for Saturday.”