London Scottish 23

Moseley 18

There comes a time in every season when league points are the only positive that matters and though we're not quite at the win-at-all-costs stage yet, even those responsible for Moseley's performance levels would love a couple of ugly wins to add grist their mill.

They nearly got one here too and had they added just a couple more pick and drives to the last play assault that took them to within 2m of the home line, they would have achieved it. Instead they ran out of ruck-clearers and Buster Lawrence was penalised for holding on.

But in truth it was Scottish who deserved the victory, largely given their first half supremacy which allowed them to build a 13-0 lead.

With the Exiles' former Moseley players Chevvy Pennycook and Andy Reay creating a try for Gerard Mullen and Colin Quigley winning a couple of penalties for James Love to hoof over, there was a distinct thumbing of the nose in the visitors' direction.

But as they do Moseley kept plugging away and once they'd sucked Scottish into an exchange of mediocre kicks during the second period the game started to turn.

Moseley's forwards smuggled Ben Pienaar over the line for 13-7 just before half time and some direct fringe charges sucked in defenders for Anthony Carter to nip in at the corner, a try that was followed by an unedifying spat between Adam Caves and Love.

And Ollie Thomas kept dragging Moseley closer in increments of three but once more the damage had been done in the opening 40 and the winger and his team-mates had to settle for a loss bonus.

As a result Maggs was left to focus on yet another missed opportunity and to pose questions of what might have been. "I think our ball retention was better [than at Leeds], when we kept the ball in the second half we scored," the head coach said.

"It's frustrating because we are almost there but we are not quite getting across the line. You can't fault the lads' effort but we have just got to keep going.

"We have had a tough run with away games, we have got concentrate on our home games now and we have got Rotherham next week.

"There are lots of positives to take from that considering the conditions. That's our next challenge now and we are looking forward to that."

One huge negative is the loss of Craig Voisey, for months rather than weeks. The tighthead, in fact their only proven tighthead, has broken the same arm that ended last season. Asking him to play with a bust arm as well as the broken thumb he has carried in the last few weeks might be too much even for wafer-thin Moseley.

In that respect the first ten Championship games have not been kind to Maggs. If there were three players his inexperienced pack could ill-afford to do without they are Voisey, Mike Powell and Neil Mason. Guess who's injured.

"Neil Mason and Mike Powell are big influential players, Mike has been a big loss to us," Maggs admitted. "We have got to make do with what we have got, we have not got the luxury of going out and signing five or six players.

"These boys need to find a way of imposing themselves physically and they can do it. That's the frustrating thing for me, we are a very good, capable side when we want to be. But we just can't do it for 80 minutes."

If that trait continues by the time the conditions turn back again Moseley might need more than a few positives from every game.

SCOTTISH: Thompson; Love, Grove, Reay (Gidlow 57), Mullen; Godman, Samson (Bolt 54); Irish (Quigley 61), Kwasnicki (Allen 57), Quigley (MacKenzie 57), Spivey (Twomey 57), Karonias, Russell (Calder 78), Pennycook, Bright. Replacement: McCall

MOSELEY: Carter; Hunt S, King, Hayter, Thomas; Hughes, Brown; Waller (Herriott 50), Caves (Wilkes 71), Voisey (Thorp 28), Lockley, Hicks, Lawrence, Robinson O (Pons 50), Pienaar. Replacements: Burrows, Hunt B, Robinson B

Referee: Matthew Carley (RFU)