Salisbury 15-52 Chippenham

THE last few seasons have seen Salisbury involved in end of season promotion battles or relegation struggles so as this season peters out with nothing to play for there is a strange feel to games.

Once again injury and non availability played havoc with the Salisbury selection, Luke Green and Jonah Thorpe were plucked from the United and A XVs to form a new partnership in the second row, Tom Pottage returned to the wing and Dave Salomon, Bill Bailey and Ashley Wright filled the bench.

Chippenham are involved in a bid for promotion and started purposefully, retaining possession well and running hard and aggressively at the home defence and soon opened the scoring.

Salisbury were not cowed and rallied once they had their hands on the ball.

After a good spell James Bagguley kicked a penalty and then finished off a good period of pressure with a try, Pottage nonchalantly kicking the conversion, for the lead.

The North Wiltshire riposte was swift and Salisbury fell behind to a converted try before Jack Gurney found Dan Hammond on his shoulder and the winger was in for a score.

Sadly from this point the home side began to suffer from a fitness point of view and were unable to match the intensity of their opponents, eventually sliding to a 52-15 loss.

The score aside much credit must be given to the players who stepped up and performed at this level. Hopefully the experience will stay with them longer than the result.

This Saturday Salisbury make the long trek to Grove in Oxfordshire and will be looking for an improved performance.

Salisbury United showed a lot of character, inspired by captain Rob Becher and Peter MacLennan, as they outplayed a dogged Bridport team but left a number of scoring opportunities out on the pitch.

After going behind to a penalty, Becher scored a sensational individual effort converted by Jamie Wright, before an injury disrupted the flow of the game, requiring it to move to an adjoining pitch.

The second half was a brighter affair for the home team who looked like scoring every time they had the ball, Max Lloyd went over followed by Ollie Dykes, Wright adding both extras. The last ten minutes were tense, with Bridport scoring twice before the home team closed out the game for a deserved 21-15 win.