V’s turned up to a bitterly cold salts ground for the second week on the bounce with a major point to prove having been humiliated in the cup the previous week. Straight from the kick-off it was clear that V’s were not going to allow themselves to be bullied and the aggression levels that were missing in the last encounter were clear for all to see.
The early exchanges all went the way of V’s and with strong line breaks coming from Jack Ward in the pack and both Hippkiss’s in the backs it was looking promising for the away side. Both Sam Irvine at 10 and Will Slatery at 9 were making good use of the favourable wind pining salts in their own half for the majority of the first half but the home side’s defence proved hard to break and wave after wave of V’s attack was repelled. Despite the play going the way of V’s the sides went into the break all square at 0 – 0.
The second half brought about a change in momentum and it didn’t take long for the home side to put points on the board with an unconverted try. This did not seem to affect the V’s who put together some good phases eventually wining a penalty in front of the post which John Hipkiss converted confidently. The game remained tight with both sides defences keeping the other side in check for the majority of the second half. With 15 minutes to go Salts had a line-out on the V’s 5 metre line, the V’s jumpers put enough pressure on to disrupt the line-out however a fortunate bounce ended up in the number 8’s hands and despite brave defence from skipper Jimmy Hateley the try was scored. The game went into the final 5 minutes with just 7 points separating the 2 sides and the draw was still on the cards. A massive hit by Jack Ward lead to turnover ball and gave the V’s 1 last chance to attack but it wasn’t to be and Salts managed to scramble the ball into touch much to the relief of the home support.
The game ended 10 – 3 securing a hard earned bonus point which probably didn’t do the losing side justice.