ROYAL Wootton Bassett lost 20-18 to Exmouth on Saturday after conceding a penalty in the penultimate play of the game.

Bassett were within seconds of doubling their win tally for the year, but a costly error made sure the club’s tricky start to life in South West Premier continued.

The early exchanges were cautious, with both sides’ defences on top, and the score remained 3-3 heading towards half-time.

But as the half-hour mark came and went, a sustained Bassett attack was rewarded with the game’s first try as winger Dane Hale crashed over in the corner.

However, the end of the first half was not so happy for the visitors as not only did Exmouth score a converted try to take the lead, but Bassett’s Phil Bardwell was sent to the sin bin in the final minute of the half.

Bassett survived an early long-range penalty after the restart, but not long after Bardwell was reintroduced, Josh McCafferty replaced him in the bin.

Despite the discipline issues, Bassett continued attacking and took the lead when Tom Fieldsend went on a mazy run before touching down under the posts to give the away side a 15-10 lead.

Two further yellow cards for Charlie Hix and Joshua Rice saw Exmouth regain the advantage with 10 minutes to go, but once Bassett returned to full strength, Alan Low’s side nudged in front once again through the boot of Fieldsend.

Unfortunately for Bassett, Exmouth then struck back in added time to lead 20-18 with the ball going over off the posts.

Meanwhile, in South West One East, Marlborough lost their second game of the season against Oxford Harlequins. Quins had won all four of their games so far, and they added to that with a 20-12 victory away at the Common outfit.

Trowbridge were the only Wiltshire side to win last weekend, securing a thumping 35-7 success away at struggling Grove. Chippenham narrowly went down 20-23 at home to Banbury.

In Southern Counties South, Swindon won their Wiltshire derby against Salisbury thanks to an 18-3 success on home soil. Swindon College Old Boys trounced Dorchester 31-10, also at home.

Devizes beat Walcot 25-8 away while Corsham lost 23-6 on the road against Wimborne.