AN EARLY red card for Chris Rowland coupled with Phil Bardwell’s controversial sin bin forced Royal Wootton Bassett to dig deep in their latest South West One (East) tie against bottom club Windsor.

Taking the above into consideration, you can’t blame head coach Alan Low for expressing his feelings of pride after his men recorded a character-building 13-38 win at Home Park.

The 25-point victory stretched Bassett’s unbeaten start to the season to four games – from which they have picked up all 20 points on offer – and leaves them tied at the top of the table with the equally impressive Banbury.

Low was also without the services of Troy Cusack, Joe Pettit, Scott Douglas and Ethan Stock for Saturday’s tie.

But the first team’s back-up options performed impressively – making Bassett’s latest win even more sweet.

Low said: “Windsor put us on the back foot.

“For the guys to turn things around was fantastic, they all did a brilliant job in the first half to weather the storm and compose themselves.

“We did well again in the second half, if a bit dis-jointed at times. But that is to be expected when you’re down to 14 men.

“No one felt any pressure at half time, and we started to put some points on the board afterwards.”

Low expects the squad’s self belief to grow exponentially off the back of Saturday’s win.

And confidence within the first team is no doubt in a strong place ahead of this weekend’s visit of Salisbury.

Low added: “Games like Saturday will help self-belief in the squad grow.

“Even when we’re up against things, we can still perform. I won’t say the boys were disappointed with their performance, but they felt like they could’ve done better.

“To come out and play the way they did having lost Chris Rowland so early was brilliant.”

Elsewhere in the region, Swindon slipped to an 18-17 defeat at Swanage in Southern Counties South while Swindon College Old Boys lost 17-14 at North Dorset.

In Wadworth Gloucestershire I, Fairford got the better of local rivals Cirencester, winning 32-15.