Calne Rugby travelled to play Bath Saracens looking for a strong performance against a team languishing in Dorset and Wiltshire 2 North.
In near perfect conditions for rugby, Calne started well but were matched by a spirited and motivated Saracens team. As both teams looked to established control, it became apparent that Calne’s dominance would come from the scrum as Pete Brownlie, Dave Evans and Tom Morten drove the lighter Saracens pack off the ball. In open play Calne’s Marcus Turner, Bruce Harper and Adam Young cut through the home sides defensive line only to be stopped by some good, last ditch defending.
Within ten minutes of the kickoff Calne’s dominance in scrum resulted in the remainder of the game being played with uncontested scrums.
Eventually the breakthrough came from captain Tom Morten who crashed over the line and this would set up a see-saw battle in which both sides would have their successes.
Calne, who had made a couple of changes to their back line, took a while to settle and Bath Saracens looked to capitalise by attacking the Calne line. On a number of occasions, fullback Mark Webber put in try saving tackles. Keith Bradley was his usual, reliable self at the line out and Chris McAlonan seemed to be everywhere on the pitch, tackling everything that moved.
After another Calne try it looked like the home side had established control of the game, but Bath Saracens had other ideas. The home side put together some good phases and were quick to offer load out of tackles to their support runners and Calne were slow to respond as Saracens touched down to record their first try of the afternoon.
Calne’s scrum half Liam Kearney continued to look for play makers Rhys Taylor and Marcus Turner while Simon Walker and Alan Wicks worked hard to repel pressure from a spirited Saracens side.
Mid way through the second hald Calne introduced, Dave Homes (Gub), Nick Titcome & Cameron and Rhys Davies to the action and it was during the last ten minutes, that the visitors scored another try to secure a hard fought win.
Calne Rugby’s try scorers: Tom Morten (2) , Rhys Taylor, Marcus Turner, Dave Holmes, Jamie Palmer.
Captain Tom Morten said ” We made hard work of it but to Bath Saracens credit, they played well and scored a few well worked tries.
Chairman Chris Austin commented: “We were not firing on all cylinders today and Bath Saracens played better than their league position suggests. But any win away from home is a good win”. However, we all know we need to play a lot better this coming Saturday when we take on league leaders Avonvale at the Rec.