On the face of it, Minety’s loss at 8th placed Melksham would have been a disappointment, especially since they led at half time, but given the make up of the team (see the match report), the 18 players put in an immense effort and came away with a richly deserved losing bonus point to add to our league tally and keep us just about in touch with 4th placed Warminster with three matches left in the season.
Minety were really relying upon Pewsey Vale, who we meet at Minety Fields next Saturday, to beat Warminster to close the gap up completely, but Pewsey conceded the match and Warminster picked up 5 league points as a consequence.
Elsewhere, Bradford defeated 3rd placed Avonvale and now require just a single point from their last league match of the season, at home to 11th placed Trowbridge, to secure the title and promotion. 2nd placed Combe Down kept up the pressure with a convincing 43-10 away win at Trowbridge while Chippenham inflicted another defeat on Supermarine and Bassett comprehensively overcame Swindon, who Minety face a week on Wednesday at Minety Fields, to condemn the home side to relegation.
In effect, half of the 2nd XV were playing for the 1sts at Melksham and so the match against 3rd placed Warminster was conceded pushing Minety down into 7th place with 2 matches to go to the end of a difficult season for Matt Stone and his team. Bad weather, poor pitch conditions and a general lack of playing staff across the club meant that the 2nds were often unable to field a team simply because so many players were required to keep the 1st team in action.
Elsewhere, in the battle of the two top teams, Trowbridge came out on top against Corsham in a match they had to win in order to stand a chance of the title. Corsham’s loss, their only one thus far, means they will have to wait until this weekend to secure the title at Chippenham. In their last match of the season, a week on Wednesday, they face Minety at Minety Fields for an evening match to round off a hugely successful campaign.
Bath Saracens’ big win against bottom club Melksham has put them clear of Minety in 6th place, while Supermarine lost and Bradford conceded, results which kept Minety in 7th place.