come off second best

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come off second best

To finish something, such as a contest or competition, in second place. Even though I'd spent weeks working on my project for the science fair, I still came off second best.
See also: come, off, second
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

come off second best

to be second to someone or something; to get the poorer end of a bargain. As usual, he came off second best with a little less prize money than the winner. I don't want to come off second best again.
See also: come, off, second
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Tim Easterby's charge was giving away nearly a stone when coming off second best by a length and a half over this course and distance last week.
I can't fault the service for the town centre, but we are coming off second best in the rural areas."
The seven-year-old looked to be coming off second best in a protracted struggle with Silent Cracker but his rival made a horrendous blunder at the final fence, almost knocking Norman Williamson out of the saddle and handing the advantge back to Lord Esker and Joe Tizzard.
The 15-8 chance briefly looked to be coming off second best in a battle with 8-11 market leader Theatre Wine close home, but the angle proved deceptive and Golden Flowerpower held on to sting backers who matched more than PS16,000 on the second at 1.01.
It was the lone Scots victory on the second day of the meeting with Laura Muir coming off second best to Laura Weightman in the 1500m.
His reward was a first league start of the campaign at Villa Park but after coming off second best in a tackle with Warnock he was replaced by Seamus Coleman 20 minutes from time.
With Ian Poulter coming off second best to Westwood just as he did in practice on Tuesday, last season's European Tour No 1 marched four clear of the field by going to the turn in a superb 33 and then making a curling 18-footer for his fourth birdie of the day at the 10th.
37 GLAMORGAN Wanderers showed in a thrilling Premiership game at the Park that it is possible to win matches when your forwards are coming off second best.
The England under-21 international was stretchered off against Chelsea on Saturday after coming off second best in a challenge with Michael Essien.
BLUES star Stephen Kelly is unlikely to be volunteering for penalty-taking duty this season - after coming off second best to the Birmingham Mail.
The seven-year-old has been well tested since switching to the bigger obstacles this season, running into subsequent Grade Two winner Turko on his debut at Aintree before coming off second best to recent winner Heez A Dreamer at Uttoxeter.
Coming off second best at the tackle area was the key factor in Wales' hefty Twickenham defeat.
The expensive buy made an eyecatching racecourse debut over tomorrow's seven furlongs at the Midlands track last month, when coming off second best to Mark Johnston's Atlantic Waves.
Veteran Noade made the announcement after coming off second best in a warm-up bout in Barcelona on Sunday.
After coming off second best at half-time, the Mariners stormed into a twogoal lead within seven minutes of the restart.