The medical student who kicked Twickenham to promotion has admitted his heroics came more as a relief than anything else.
Dom Brown slotted the touchline conversion that saw head coach Clive See’s men edge a play-off thriller 44-43 against Saffron Walden at Parkfields on Saturday to secure elevation to London Division One North.
The visitors had fought back from 30-16 down to take the game into extra-time with scores level at 30-30 and they looked set for the win as they led 43-37 as the clock ticked down towards the end of the season.
But a try in the corner with two minutes remaining brought Twickenham to within a point of their rivals and fly half Brown showed the calmness of a brain surgeon to kick his side in front.
Even then Walden had time to see a try awarded then disallowed and a penalty kick fall yards short of the target as Twickenham hung on to win.
“It was surreal,” said 25-year-old Brown, who is studying medicine at University College London.
“We had so many wins this year that we all felt we deserved to go up.
“For it all to come down to one game, made those last few minutes very nervy.
“I’ve never played in a game like it and certainly not in a match with so much riding on it.
“When I made the kick I thought we’d won the game.
“I missed a couple of kicks in normal time, but in a funny way the kick from the touchline had no pressure on it. It was a relief to get it.
Winning feeling: Number eight Sam Knight fires off a reverse pass in the move that led to his first half try
“No one expects you to get those – but when they go over everyone loves you.”
Brown grew up playing for near neighbours Teddington but joined Twickenham four years ago after finishing his first degree at Bath University.
Twickenham, beaten only twice in the league all season and pipped to the London Division Two North West title by Old Priorians, have now enjoyed two successive promotions.
Captain Richard Moses was the club’s leading try scorer with 27, while Brown finished the campaign as the club’s leading points scorer.
But the latter admitted Twickenham, who collected 100 league points from their 22 matches this term, might not have things as much their own way next term.
“We’ve been together a while now and we have been developing towards this,” he added.
“It is going to be tough at that level. It is a difficult league.
“It was a few of the guys’ last game for the club at the weekend so we will have to see how it goes.”