MINETY took the bragging rights in their new year derby at home to Royal Wootton Bassett II in Dorset & Wilts One North, claiming a 25-17 victory.

The home team started brightly and a series of attacks eventually led to Garin Garland running in the first try after only four minutes.

Bassett struck back immediately, pinning the home team back in their 22 and moving the ball confidently from side to side before crossing for a converted try.

Matters worsened for Minety when Ben Langridge suffered an ankle injury and was forced to withdraw.

The visitors increased their lead midway through the half from another slick move, which ended with another converted try.

The home team struck back, dominating the scrum and disrupting the Bassett lineout, and after another burst into the opposition 22 by Andrew Hibbard, Garland found captain Tom Claxton to score his first points of the season.

Minety were reduced to 14 players when Jack Ward saw yellow and Bassett increased their lead with a penalty.

Once Ward was back on the pitch, Minety were able to level the scores at 17-17 at half-time through a penalty try after James Nicksen’s charge to the line was halted by a high tackle.

Minety were dominant as the second half got under way, but Bassett held them out.

With 15 minutes to go, Bassett were reduced to 14 men after a high tackle and Garland stroked home the penalty to put Minety 20-17 ahead.

The visitors’ plight then deepened when they went down to 13 men as another yellow was shown for a high tackle again.

The match was finally settled in stoppage time as Garland found Chris Rule, who broke through the line and released Hibbard and he passed back to Garland to cross in the corner for the bonus point.

Garland was yellow carded as Bassett made a desperate last attempt on the Minety tryline, but the home side held out magnificently.

Elsewhere, Pewsey Vale suffered a narrow 55-43 defeat at home to Warminster, but Calne and Sutton Benger had much tougher afternoons.

Benger were thumped 50-0 as they hosted leaders Combe Down, while Calne were crushed 45-5 at Avonvale.