SALISBURY RFC made it back-to-wins for the first time all season as they edged a tense relegation battle with Launceston 14-7.

Green and Whites won the 'six-pointer' to step closer to safety in National League 3 South West, closing the gap on Lydney by six points.

In bright sunshine at Castle Road, the Cornish visitors shaded early possession but the bone crunching defence of Salisbury kept them at bay, with Ollie Bowden making one try-saving effort in front of his posts.

The home side looked to be gaining in confidence but a poor offload during a break saw Launceston in for the opening try from Ryan Western, converted by Frazer Honey.

Salisbury dusted themselves down and began to put pressure on the visitors which was rewarded when the industrious Matt Dawson superbly marshalled a driving maul to touch down, Tom Lane added the extras and the game was evenly poised at 7-7.

The game continued in the same vein with both sides showing their nerves with mistakes aplenty. Salisbury lost centre Christian Metson with a broken jaw but continued to apply pressure and could not add to the score.

It was in the final quarter when John Goldsmith timed his run to perfection and scattered the Launceston defence for a fine try and, once again, the metronomic boot of Lane made sure of the conversion.

The home side's front five dug deep to see the game out for the much-deserved win.

Skipper Josh Green said: “That showed our improvement."

"Before Christmas, it was the sort of game we were unable to shut out, but now that we have done this we can take huge confidence into the remainder of the season.”

Neil Loader's charges look to make it three wins on the trot when they travel to mid-table Brixham on Saturday.