Bassett not safe from drop - Martin
WOOTTON Bassett skipper David Martin is refusing to accept his side are safe from Southern Counties South relegation despite a 56-0 hammering of bottom side Supermarine.
Andrew Phoenix, Tim Gallimore, David Hogg, Rhys Cadogen and Tucker Blinkhorn all managed to charge over for scores at Ballard’s Ash on Saturday, in a game Bassett dominated from start to finish.
The win leaves them a comfortable 21 points clear of lowly Marine and 13 ahead of second-bottom Oakmeadians, who fill the two expected relegation places, but Martin is not resting on his laurels as the season enters the final third.
“There is always uncertainty about how many will go down, so we have to make sure we are not in contention at all, however many spots there are,” he said.
“There is often two going down but sometimes three, and it all depends on who’s coming down from the league above and where they would come back down to, so we want to make sure we are clear of any potential battle.
“We’ve already played the bottom two twice so we have games against teams higher in the league to come now, and Saturday’s game with Walcot will be crucial.”
Martin was pleased with the way his players performed against Supermarine, in a victory centred around dominance at both the scrum and lineout. “We prepared for this and targeted it as a win, and we felt as if we had been building towards a win for a few weeks with some good performances, even though results hadn’t gone our way,” he said.
“It was very encouraging to get this result, and we were able to have a quality set piece which is huge in rugby, and the scrum was really solid as well.
“These are the platforms you need, because you can’t expect to win a game without a scrum or a lineout.”
Supermarine boss Gavin Russ admitted defeat in the club’s battle to avoid Southern Counties South relegation following the 56-0 defeat away at rivals Wootton Bassett.
The defeat leaves the South Marston side eight points adrift of second-bottom Oakmeadians, and 17 behind Walcot who are the final side above the relegation line.
Marine were without a number of players who were unavailable, but Russ refused to use that as an excuse as he begins to plan for next season after admitting their survival chances are gone.
“It’s a huge backward step for us, but we couldn’t select the side we wanted because it was originally a free weekend, and people had agreed to do things,” he said.
“We just didn’t perform, simple as that.
In Dorset & Wilts 1 North, Minety edged Bradford on Avon 10-5 thanks to tries from Wes Clamp and Michael New.