BANBURY kept themselves in the promotion race with an impressive 15-5 win at home to previously unbeaten leaders Old Patesians.

Two tries from head coach Matt Goode saw Bulls end the visitors’ 18-match winning run in South West 1 East.

Banbury, who have a game in hand, slipped to third due to Chippenham’s bonus-point win at Marlow.

But they have cut the gap to leaders Old Pats to 12 points with eight games to go.

An Ed Phillips penalty gave Banbury the lead.

And it became 10-0 when Goode dived over, Phillips converting.

Darren Moore was sin-binned for the visitors, but they started the second half well and Lee Hathaway dived over.

Bulls responded brilliantly and Goode went over again, Phillips hitting a post with his conversion attempt.

Banbury dug deep to land victory, while Old Pats missed a late penalty for a losing bonus point.

Herald Series:

  • Matt Goode dives over for his first try during Banbury’s victory over leaders Old Patesians, much to the delight of Ed Phillips (left), Josh Deegan (centre) and Jimmy Manley (right) Picture: Simon Grieve

Witney made it five wins in a row when beating local rivals Grove 23-3 at Hailey Road.

But the defeat has seen the south Oxfordshire side drop back into the relegation zone after Swindon beat Salisbury.

Matt Clarke kicked two penalties to give Witney a 6-0 lead in a first half which also saw Grove’s Paul Miles and Tom McCarthy sin-binned.

Jack Birks dived over to extend the home side’s lead, before James Monks replied with a penalty.

But tries from Matt Webb and Birks, the second converted by Clarke, saw Witney earn victory.

Oxford Harlequins lost 28-19 at Wimborne.

The hosts led 10-0, thanks to a try from Max Tipping, who also kicked the conversion and a penalty.

Quins hit back to go 12-10 in front when Chris Davies and James Stacey crossed, Huw Dimond converting the latter.

A Tipping penalty put Wimborne back in front, before Lewis Mitchell crossed to make it 18-12.

Quins fought back again, Davies going over and Dimond adding the extras.

But Jamie Walton’s try and five points from the boot of Tipping saw the hosts to victory.

Bottom side Bicester lost 39-8 at home to Old Centralians.