A depleted Salisbury XV travelled to Farnham on Saturday to complete the first half of the Regional 2 South Central fixtures schedule. They struggled to contain the hosts throughout the match and finished on the receiving end of a 67 – 7 defeat.

There was no doubt that Farnham were the stronger side. They were well-balanced, with pace in their backs and forwards who combined well to continually stress Salisbury’s defence. That said, the fixture was not as one-sided as the scoreline suggests. Salisbury’s committed tackling and a willingness to spin the ball wide whenever an opportunity arose made for an entertaining afternoon.

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Salisbury conceded 36 unanswered points during the first half and made matters unnecessarily difficult for themselves. Some wayward kicking and a failure to convert penalties to points or pressure enabled Farnham to maintain the upper hand. But Credit to Salisbury for adapting to numerous absences due to injury and player non-availability. Half backs Jacques Kinnison and Aaron Hold functioned efficiently and James Kennedy’s powerful running from the backrow regularly broke through Farnham’s defence. He was a constant thorn in their side.

The visitors started the second half positively. After conceding a try on 45 minutes they rallied and placed the Farnham under sustained pressure. The hosts were reduced to 14 men after being awarded a yellow card in the 57th minute which Salisbury exploited when they attacked from a scrummage for Tom Ranaboldo to muscle his way over. Hold added the extras and the scoreline was 43 – 7 as the match entered the final quarter. Farnham then recovered their stride and were able to run in a further four tries to closeout the match.

Salisbury will host Guildford next weekend Castle Road.