BANBURY beat relegated Witney 32-19, but it was not enough to snatch South West 1 East’s play-off place.

The north Oxfordshire side headed into their final game trailing second-placed Old Centralians by three points.

Banbury’s fate was never in their own hands and they were made to settle for third as the Gloucestershire club beat Salisbury 50-28.

But it was all overshadowed by a horrific injury to Bulls forward Matthew Powell, who broke his leg in two places.

Banbury raced into a 32-0 lead after 23 minutes.

An Ed Phillips penalty put the hosts in front, before a hat-trick of tries from Justin Parker put Bulls in control at 18-0.

Sam Stoop, playing in his final league game for the club, and Ed Berridge then crossed, Phillips converting, to make it 32-0.

  • Sam Stoop marks his final league appearance with a try Video: Banbury RUFC

But the hosts were dealt a devastating blow before the break when Powell suffered his serious injury.

When play resumed, Witney replied on the stroke of half-time, James Merriman going over, Arron Lambourne kicking the extra points.

Jacob Mills was sin-binned for Banbury early in the second period and Callum Godfrey touched down for the visitors, Lambourne converting.

Bulls were a shadow of the side which had dominated the first half, but it proved enough as Witney, who finished the season seven points adrift of safety, were only able to cross again in added time, Matt Clarke diving over.

Oxford Harlequins were beaten 38-31 at home by Royal Wootton Bassett.

The hosts were pegged back three times in the opening 40 minutes as the sides were locked at 19-19.

James Stacey converted his own try and Matthew Henderson’s effort, while Freddie Myatt also went over for Quins.

But Bassett responded through Tom Fieldsend (2), who kicked two conversions, and Joe Petit.

Ollie Rees and Martin Nutt crossed, Matt White converting the latter, as Quins, who finished tenth in the table, went 31-19 ahead after 48 minutes.

But Bassett hit back to claim victory, thanks to tries from Simon Anderton, Ieuan Clements and Fieldsend, who kicked two conversions.


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