PERFORMANCES will take priority over results for Royal Wootton Bassett coach Alan Low throughout the second part of the season, following the club’s 27-10 win over Salisbury on Saturday.

Bassett’s slim title hopes were dashed in December when defeats to Newbury Blues, Old Centralians and Witney dropped Low’s troops to fifth in the South West One East table with 49 points secured from 14 fixtures.

Only four points separate second placed Old Centralians from Bassett in fifth.

And despite a push for promotion remaining on the cards, Low will take greater interest in his side’s collective performance – with one eye firmly focussed on the future.

He said: “We want to keep an eye on our performances, really. The squad set their goals at the start of the year.

“We want to go out and do the best we can each week while maintaining a strong league position.

“Our injury count at the moment means that some players are taking advantage of the opportunities available.

“The guys that have come up are doing a really good job. For us, that’s probably bigger than the team trying to push for second spot in the league.

“The development of the players that are with us is key, and they are doing a good job.

“We want to push them on, and once they’re ready, we can start pushing more for results rather than focussing on performances.”

Bassett’s win over Salisbury to start the new year proved to be a scrappy affair, and Low was pleased to see his side defeat their Wiltshire rivals while emerging unscathed from the contest.

Low underlined the injury headache the club has had to deal with in recent weeks – adding that the festive break came as a welcome respite for some players.

He said: “It was certainly a scrappy affair – I think most sides were a bit rusty given that it was the first game after the new year.

“We were happy to get over the line with five points.

“Our injury count has been massive. Christmas was an opportunity for us to rest and get some players back.

“Hopefully, one or two of those players are starting to drip back into the first team now.

“The way the holidays fell, training was difficult this year.

“We had a couple of sessions over Christmas, that wasn’t really enough to keep everyone ticking over.

“But everyone else is in the same boat.”

Elsewhere in South West One East, Swindon’s poor season continued as they slumped to a 34-17 loss away at promotion-chasing Old Centralians.

Fortunately, fellow strugglers Witney lost heavily at Beaconsfield – meaning that the gap between Mike Thompson’s outfit and a spot out of the relegation zone remains at eight points.

Marlborough claimed a thumping 39-15 win at home to Wimborne, but fellow Wiltshire sides Chippenham and Trowbridge lost to Banbury and Newbury Blues respectively.

Swindon College claimed a bonus point in defeat in Southern Counties South as they went down 22-17 at home to second-in-the-table Frome.

Finally, Supermarine are still without a win in Dorset & Wilts One North this season and lost 36-7 away at third-placed Supermarine in their first outing of 2019.