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Injury-stricken Wootton Bassett cruise to victory
Bassett had eight members of their first-team squad missing, including captain Nick Parker and deputy Phil Bardwell, with centre David Martin taking on the role of skipper for the visit of the struggling Bath-based side.
And Martin stressed how depleted the home side were as they went looking to bounce back from a 17-0 home humbling at the hands of Trowbridge last time out.
“In terms of the number of the terms of injuries we have it’s something you’d expect to account for in a season, we weren’t expecting to have so many down so early,” he said.
“There were definitely eight names that you would usually have. If you put up a squad of 25 at the start of the season and said we need to get down to 18 then roughly eight or nine are going to be lost in a season, at some point they’re going to be out.
“We’ve hit that wall quite early, and earlier than we would usually expect but it’s the case for everybody.
“Injuries account for a lot of things. It’s encouraging that we still managed to get a result in spite of that.”
Despite the mass absenteeism, the hosts steadily got a foothold on proceedings and eventually made the breakthrough midway through the first half when number eight Tim Gallimore burst through the Walcot defence out wide to bundle over the line.
Walcot retaliated in kind with a try of their own and the game meandered to half-time with both teams slowly adapting to the blustery conditions at Ballard’s Ash.
After the interval Bassett quickly accelerated into the ascendancy and David Hogg cruised through for their second score of the afternoon.
Jon Clarke added a third try for the hosts and, despite Josh Jefferies spending time in the sin-bin, flanker Dan Shoebridge pounced late on to ensure a bonus point.
For Martin, it meant 100 per cent record as Bassett captain, but he didn’t want to dwell on the stat.
“That’s a bit of a running joke,” he said.
“I’ll try and duck the captaincy for the next game so let’s not write home about that just yet.
“I was standing in because Nick has been injured for a few weeks and Phil, the vice-captain, got concussed last week.
“That was the only reason, so it was a bit of a last-minute thing.
“It was a much-needed result against a team that were in a similar sort of position as us and hadn’t had the rub of the green in their results either perhaps.
“We had to try to take advantage of having another home game.”
Elsewhere in the division, Supermarine slipped to a 106-7 defeat against Wimborne.