WITNEY started their season with a gritty 32-14 victory over Bicester.

Rhys Morgan starred with a hat-trick as the visitors ran in three tries in each half of the Southern Counties North clash, but led by only six points with just 13 minutes remaining.

Witney took the lead through a Jake Edwards try, but the hosts hit back with two Josh Wordsworth penalties to go 6-5 ahead.

However, Morgan restored the visitors’ lead, before the same player took advantage of Bicester winger Loic Radegonde being sin-binned to race over from a scrum to make it 15-6 at the break.

The home side hit back just six minutes into the second half, Reese Sullivan intercepting a pass before sprinting clear for what proved their only try of the game.

Witney hit back through Morgan’s second score, only for Dan Spencer’s penalty to keep Bicester in the hunt at 20-14.

But Witney finished strongly, Deaglan Bayliss scoring a try which Luke Manning converted, before Henry Lamb wrapped up victory with a late score.

Wallingford hit back from 14-6 down at half-time to win at newly-

promoted Chesham 26-14.

Two Jackson Sayce penalties were all the visitors had to show for their first-half display.

But they got on top after the break, Sam Botting twice going over.

Wallingford’s dominance in the second half was capped off with a well-taken Pete McKinley try in the last play of the game.

Didcot were beaten 30-17 by Stow-on-the-Wold.

Guy Nichol’s hat-trick was the highlight of a disciplined Grove performance in their 46-8 win at Corsham in Southern Counties South.

First-half tries from Dan Coombes, Ben Lloyd-Jones and Nichol, together with a penalty and two conversions from Ali McCarthy, saw the away side 22-3 ahead at the break.

They surged clear after the break, Nichol completing his treble along with further tries from Luke Matthews and Ollie Nichol, McCarthy adding another two conversions.

Oxford went down 28-10 at Drifters in their opening Berks, Bucks & Oxon Premier game of the season.

Jack Sullivan-Webb and Edward Hewins crossed for tries late in the second half, but the damage had already been done.

Abingdon beat Wheatley 36-14, with Aaron Laman scoring both converted tries for the visitors.

Wallingford 2nd won 28-5 in their local derby at Didcot 2nd in BB&O Division 3 thanks to tries from Ed Poulding (2), Chris Denton and Rhys Arnold, with Arnold converting all four.