WITNEY were pushed all the way by Marlow as they ground out a 22-13 triumph in Southern Counties North.

Tom Puddle’s early penalty was the only score until the 25th minute, when Rhys Morgan’s try put the runaway leaders 8-0 up.

But the visitors hit back to lead at half-time, Freddie Laws kicking a penalty before converting Stuart Silvester’s try.

Witney had the wind at their backs after the restart and went ahead again, Aaron Lambourne jinking over and Puddle adding the extras.

They could not pull clear and another Laws penalty cut the gap to 15-13 on 65 minutes.

The next score was vital and the hosts summoned one last push, Callum Godfrey going over and Puddle converting.

Elsewhere, hosts Bicester beat Didcot 34-28 in an entertaining Oxfordshire derby.

Dan Walker’s penalty put the hosts ahead, before Josh Witts made it 3-3 with a kick of his own.

Bicester hit back immediately as Ollie Cassidy went over, Walker adding the extras.

The fly half made it 20-3 midway through the half, kicking a penalty and converting Charlie Bethell’s try.

But Didcot closed the gap to seven points, Chris Newson crossing and Witts adding a penalty and a conversion.

Bicester’s Remi Coventry was sin-binned in the second half and the visitors turned the tide, Connor McCaffery and Rob Pengelly touching down, Witts converting one.

The hosts responded as Reece Sullivan’s try, converted by Walker, made it 27-25.

Walker then converted his own try before being sent to the sin bin, while Witts replied with a penalty.

Wallingford were edged out 13-12 by Reading.

Southern Counties South leaders Grove maintained their title push with an 80-0 thrashing of North Dorset.

Guy Nichol led the way with a hat-trick and four conversions, while Ben Law, Steve Dixey, James Monks and Mark Roberts all crossed twice.

Huw Lewis, James Wiltshire and Danny Crook also crossed, Ollie Nichol adding a conversion.

Meanwhile, Gosford All Blacks remain top of the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Premier after a narrow 24-19 triumph at Abingdon.

The margin of victory was far larger in the day’s other Oxfordshire derby, as second-placed Chipping Norton won 78-7 at Wheatley.

Oxford lost 82-7 at home to Milton Keynes.