WEYMOUTH & Portland sustained a blow to their hopes of Dorset & Wilts One South survival with a 40-10 loss to Salisbury Seconds.

Despite dominating the forward exchanges, a depleted Seahorses side was opened up through the middle on several occasions and were staring at large deficit late in the game.

However, a late Lewis Richards try, assisted by Andy Bowditch, ensured coach Simon Litster’s men salvaged some respectability from the match.

Speaking to Echosport, Litster insisted the scoreline had “flattered” the Wiltshire side.

He said: “In a nutshell, it was a similar story (to previous weeks) but not as bad because of a couple of returning players. The scoreline flattered them a little bit.

“We scored a try right at the end of the game and we looked like scoring two or three before that, we were just held up short.

“We didn’t use the slope of the pitch and the conditions adequately. We let them score a few soft tries by coming through the middle but we had Billy and Dan Hayne, they actually made quite a difference.

“They played together in the back row – that was positive.”

Despite the loss, Litster took encouragement from the Seahorses’ finish to the game, which culminated in Richards’ try.

“It came after about five or six phases of play through the forwards, committing the Salisbury players to tackle, and we created space on the left and Lewis scored in the corner.

“It was a good offload from Andy Bowditch and a well-worked try. Alex Toms converted it from the left touchline,” Litster said.

Weymouth & Portland fielded Italian teenager Francesco Orlacchio at scrum-half and Litster praised his contribution to the side, but rued Norton Rogers’ quiet game on the wing.

He said: “Our speedster Norton on the wing didn’t really get the ball in space because the Salisbury defence was up very quick.

“But Francesco’s an exchange student and we ended up having to put him in the first team at scrum-half. He tackles and he’s got a good pass on him. I’m proud of him for a young lad.”

The Seahorses face in-form Dorset Dockers next up.

Litster said: “We’ve still got hope of staying up, and that’s the aim. We’ve got Dockers, who beat Dorchester, but there are signs of improvement.

“The other games we’re hoping for the best and to convert the pressure into points.”

Seahorses: Comben, Sankey, A Bowditch, K Leatham, J Leatham, B Hayne, D Hayne, Oaksford, Orlacchio, Toms, Harris, Allan, Young, Rogers, Richards


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