Salisbury ended their six-match losing run on Saturday with a hard-fought win over Witney at Castle Road.

Salisbury were positive and adventurous from the start.

A dangerous break from Will Murley forced the visitors onto the back foot but the subsequent attack ended with a knock-on. The hosts continued to press Witney.

Salisbury were purposeful and direct in attack but infringement or error prevented them from converting promising attacks into points during the very earliest stages.

Undeterred, their dominance resulted in a penalty which was kicked for the corner on eight minutes.

With the lineout won, James Kennedy forced his way over for the try and Ollie Bate’s conversion gave the hosts a 7–0 lead.

Salisbury Journal: Number 8 James Kennedy on a typical attacking burstNumber 8 James Kennedy on a typical attacking burst

Salisbury continued on to dominate. Flyhalf Bate’s accurate distribution enabled forwards and backs to combine efficiently.

The hosts were rewarded with a second try from Flo Ryder in the 13th minute. Bate added the extras and Salisbury were leading 14 – 0.

Witney responded in the second quarter. They were physical and able to gain a foothold but missed a penalty attempt 19 minutes.

However, after a sustained period of pressure the visitors scored a converted try in the 21st minute to reduce Salisbury’s lead to 14 – 7.

From that point neither side had control, rucks and mauls were keenly contest but often momentum was lost through error.

Salisbury Journal: Inside-centre Blake Ryder touches down for Salisbury's second tryInside-centre Blake Ryder touches down for Salisbury's second try

A piece of individual brilliance and searing pace from Witney’s flyhalf George Lewis enable him to shrug off two tacklers and scythe through Salisbury’s defence to score under the posts on 35 minutes.

This levelled the score at 14 – 14.

The second half continued as the first half had ended with neither side taking control.

Salisbury were badly disrupted when they received a yellow card on 43 minutes for a high tackle and another on 49 minutes for a maul infringement.

Their defence and physical commitment when down to 13 men was impressive. An extraordinary effort which prevented Witney from scoring.

Salisbury came close to scoring a third try after Bates spun the ball wide for Tom Tully to cut through at pace. Witney subsequently conceded a penalty which Bate converted to score the only points of the half on 66 minutes.

It was a tense finish with the visitors desperate to score, they were held-up over the line on one occasion and Salisbury retained their 17 – 14 lead.

It is clear that Salisbury are beginning to find their feet in Regional 2 South Central and will be looking forward to travelling to bottom club Reading next week.