Welwyn produced a stunning comeback to snatch victory from bottom of the league Hackney.

When the hosts kicked a penalty two minutes into the second half at their Hackney Marshes home, they extended their lead to 27-5 and put the game seemingly beyond the visitors.

But the Hobbs Way-based rugby club reached deep down and found some remarkable character to chip away at the advantage before snatching a 33-32 success in the final few minutes.

In the absence of skipper Josh Milton, Drew LeBaigue took the armband, but Welwyn, who were already without Chris Kemp, then lost scrum-half Yourgos Alexander just before kick-off.

It gave only a second full game to 18-year-old Cameron Sharkey.

And the disruptions appeared to have had little effect when Brendon Marume pounced on a loose ball after two minutes and sprinted in from 40 metres.

But Hackney reacted immediately with a try in the corner before extending their lead to 12-5 with just eight minutes on the clock.

Welwyn’s line-out was not functioning well and the hosts also nullified Welwyn’s powerful scrum and without their normal set-piece precision, the attacking options were somewhat limited.

Hackney took full advantage of this, adding two further tries in the last 10 minutes of the half to bring up a valuable bonus point and hand them a 24-5 lead.

Welwyn's coaches reacted by bringing on fresh legs at the interval, introducing Matt Trussell, Jack Cotterell and Joe Brace.

And while all three made a big impact, as did a positional switch between Tom Hamer and Will Latham, Hackney scored first with the aforementioned penalty.

That though finally stirred Welwyn into action.

Two converted tries in five minutes, the first from Vetaia Kawea and the second from Ryan Saunders with Latham the man on kicking duties, pulled the deficit back to eight.

That went back to double figures with five more points for the home side from a line-out catch and drive but it would be the last time Welwyn would allow themselves to be breached.

A handful of minutes later, Latham kicked a loose ball through the defence and won the race to the touch down, converting his own try and bringing the gap to just one more converted score.

And Welwyn went close when Fin Sutherland showed his pace on the left wing to cross in the corner.

He was held up though.

However, with only five minutes to go, veteran back row forward Rob Picken powered his way over from close quarters and Latham held his nerve to land the conversion and put Welwyn in front again.

The drama wasn't done though and Hackney were handed one more chance to take the spoils with a penalty 35 metres out.

That drifted to the left of the posts and Welwyn hung on for the final two minutes to see the game out.

The result leaves Welwyn sixth as all of the sides above them but the gap to Ruislip beneath them is now a whopping 13.

They are on the road again on Saturday when they go to Finchley.

Datchworth remain third from bottom after a 31-13 loss at Old Streetonians.