Senior Mens Rugby Reports - Sat. 6th Oct. 2018
Click through to read about the 1st and 2nd XV League wins, and the Stones playing table-toppers Poole.
Salisbury’s 1st XV secured local bragging rights and maximum points over Wiltshire rivals Swindon, with a 47:0 victory in their South West 1 East league fixture. The weather conditions were more suited to the North Wiltshire team who fielded plenty of beef, but Salisbury held all the aces through a dominant display from the forwards, allowing the slick backs to pick apart the Swindon defence as it tired in the second half. For the second week running Salisbury came firing out of the blocks, Ross Stanley scoring out wide after only 3 minutes, but although the home side were controlling territory and the ball, threatening on several occasions including being held up over the line, they couldn’t trouble the scoreboard until the stroke of half-time with a Boyd Rouse try that he also converted. The second-half was never a procession, but Salisbury were now threatening every time they had the ball. The forwards laying down a series of great platforms for fly-half Rouse to control proceedings, bringing his outside backs into play with some devastating running lines. David Tonge opened the half with a score under the posts, and it was evident that Salisbury had in their sights not only the try-scoring bonus point, but also to squeeze out any opportunity for Swindon to hit back. Keeping their opponents pinned to their own half, the commanding lineout drove several times before Tonge released the backs to spring Joe Tully through a gap and a run to the line. Joe Goldsmith was next to score, breaking through from 40m and having the speed to hold of the chasing defenders. The home crowd were now in very good spirits, enjoying the whole performance and the contributions from new boys Richard Smart and Rob Becher. A series of thrusts followed by quick hands saw Rob Larcombe dash through a hole to score under the posts, very nearly followed by a second Stanley score before he was bundled into touch. However, the play was only ever moving in one direction, and following two close efforts from Rory MacTaggart there was just time for Nik Wooton to display his power and force his way over for the final try. With Rouse converting all the second half scores, and the miserly home defence denying Swindon any points, Salisbury had defied the weather to warm the Castle Road crowd.
Salisbury United picked up their first League win of the season in a close fought match away to newly promoted Puddletown. It is always a difficult task when playing any first XVs, so it was a satisfied skipper Jake McConnell who scored one try, the other coming from Max Lloyd to take Salisbury out to a 10:5 lead before Puddletown struck back with a converted try to re-take the lead. On a difficult day for kickers, Tom Pottage held his nerve to slot a penalty with the very last kick of the game to secure a 13:12 win.
On Hudsons’ Field Salisbury Stones were up against League leaders Poole, but acquitted themselves very well taking a first-half lead of 7:5 due to a smartly taken try by Luciano Colombina converted by Joe Jackson. The second half saw Poole take control and deny Salisbury any further points to run-out 34:7 winners.