Director of rugby Mike Schmid reckons his side’s first point of the season, could – and should – have been more.

Schmid’s men lost 20-15 to former Premiership giants Leeds Carnegie and had two tries disallowed – including one from the last play of the game.

The result did at least bring Esher a losing bonus point – their first of the Championship campaign – leaving the Molesey Road chief confident of a turnaround in his side’s fortunes.

“The Leeds coaching team said it was the most physical game they had played this season,” he said.

“We have to keep bringing that physicality to every game we play from here on in and we can turn this around.

“We are growing in confidence week by week.

“If we can continue to play that way we will win more games than we lose between now and the end of the season.”

Five penalties from Rob Kirby had kept Esher in the hunt at the weekend and Perry Parker had thought he had scored a last-gasp winner right under the posts.

But the referee deemed the ball had been held up over the line before blowing the final whistle, leaving Schmid to rue what might have been.

“I’m very proud of the performance. We deserved more and I’m so disappointed for them,” he added.

“We’ve been in and around getting our first league points of the season for a while now but we are just not getting the luck.

“Our boys were convinced Perry had got it down, but by the time the referee was in a position to see it, there were a-million-and-one Leeds hands under the ball.

“When things are going against you don’t get the bounce of the ball your way and that is what is happening at the moment.

“It is not for lack of effort on our part.”

Schmid was pleased to report his men had picked up no injuries from the encounter and expected prop Dave Millard to return from the long-term casualty list within the next fortnight.

Esher, without a win in the Championship all season, travel to Bedford Blues on Saturday hoping to avenge the 55-6 drubbing they were on the end of at Molesey Road earlier in the campaign.