THE adaptability of his squad was the most pleasing aspect for Royal Wootton Bassett head coach Alan Low at the weekend as his troops toiled to a 20-15 win over bottom side Stratford Upon Avon in South West One East.

Low felt his side underestimated their hosts’ capabilities, but considering very few of his players were in their natural positions, the Bassett chief was just pleased to have picked up another vital win in their outside quest for promotion.

The Ballards Ash outfit have moved up to fourth in the table, but remain four points behind second-place Old Centralians.

Low said: “The most pleasing thing was the way the guys stuck to their task.

“We had a lot of players playing out of position in the back five and in the pack, we only had two players in their regular positions, so the adaptability of the squad – certainly up front – was good.

“We left three or four scores out on the pitch, which we’re a little bit disappointed about, but to go up to Stratford and get a result is good.

“They’ve already recruited a few in their preparations for next year and they offered a bit more than what we were expecting, but we were happy with our game in the end.”

County rivals Marlborough remain one place above Bassett in third following a battling 32-29 win away at Banbury.

The hosts started well, but it was Marlborough who scored first. After a quick penalty and good work from the forwards, Epeli Kotobalavu dived over from close range.

Banbury responded and a penalty reduced the lead, and when Marlborough’s Semisi Rasivo saw yellow, the home side capitalised on the advantage to take the lead with a converted try.

Another Banbury try saw them move 10 points clear, but Marlborough replied with a try of their own after a good driving maul from a lineout, again Kotobalavu touching down to make the half-time score 15-10.

Jake Williams’ penalty got the scoreboard ticking over for the visitors in the second half, but Banbury soon ran in their third try under the posts, with the conversion giving them a 22-13 lead.

Marlborough coach Elisi Vunipola made a tactical change and Macdonald Lewis’ tactical kicks soon began to pin Banbury deep in their own half.

The pressure told when the hosts were reduced in numbers after a sin-binning and Ben Fulton gathered a crossfield kick from Macdonald to touch down.

Banbury were defending well, but Marlborough sensed the comeback was on and they kept up the pressure, with Amori Nailago showing his finishing skills to score before Williams' conversion made it 25-22 to the visitors.

Marlborough quickly got on the offensive again and Kotobalavu completed his hat-trick with another drive over the line, converted by Williams to push the lead to 10 points in the closing stages.

Banbury were not done and they had the final word with a converted try to ensure they finished the game with two bonus points to their name, but it was too late to deny Marlborough the win.

Chippenham suffered a fourth defeat on the bounce by going down 33-14 away at Old Centralians, while Trowbridge pushed second-placed Old Centralians all the way before falling17-15 at home.