WIMBORNE II 34
DORCHESTER’s unbeaten run ended as they were out-muscled by a physical Wimborne side in their table-topping clash in the Wadworth 6x Dorset & Wilts One South.
The tone of the encounter was set early on as Wimborne used their pack to wear down Dorchester.
A penalty kick to the corner and a catch and drive led to the hosts’ first try and the conversion was added for an early lead.
It was 15 minutes in before Dorchester created a good ball and they used it well, zipping the ball down the line to give James Baker, this season’s leading try scorer, a run to the corner.
A second converted try for Wimborne, identical to the first, and a simple penalty stretched their lead to 12 points.
Dorchester managed to close the gap with a converted try, with James Newsam driving over from close range to keep the visitors within range.
However, Dorchester were still looking dangerous and were able to stretch the hosts’ defence and managed to narrow the scoreline.
Full-back Matt Read crossed for Dorchester’s third try and Baker added a fourth in the right corner to earn the visitors a bonus point.
Despite this, a late Wimborne penalty denied the away side a second losing bonus point.
Dorchester now lie second in the league with 41 points, two behind Wimborne but with a healthy difference and nine ahead of third-placed Bournemouth.
The county town side also suffered several injuries ahead of this week’s Senior Vase final against Oakmeadians at Swanage & Wareham.
Following the game, Dorchester coach Ben Parker reflected: “This was not our best performance by a long way, and the team have accepted that.
“We were down five of our key regular players for a number of reasons, but that should not be an excuse for this poor performance.
“Wimborne were a more physical side and outperformed us in the pack which ultimately won them the game.
“We have worked hard on setting up a good defence and being aggressive, but for whatever reasons this just did not happen, and when we finally did step up it was too late.
“We will learn from this and now focus on our next game.”
In the other senior games this weekend, Dorchester’s A XV were handed a home walkover as Bournemouth IV could not field a team, and the Gladiators won a tough away game against Salisbury IV.