FAIRFORD suffered an embarrassing defeat to basement boys Pewsey Vale on a frustrating afternoon for the Badgers.
Dorset & Wilts Div One North
Pewsey Vale 16
The opening exchanges were even but the whistle-happy referee gave Pewsey a kickable penalty, which was converted to make it 3-0 to the hosts.
Thereafter Fairford rallied well and powerful work off the line-out by the visiting pack gave them their first score, with Andrew Stobbs driving over from a few metres out to record his first try for the club.
Andy Waite added the extras despite the blustery conditions.
The game was scrappy thereafter with both sides' penalty count increasing at a worrying rate, despite no cards being brandished.
Fairford extended their lead as skipper Richard Lewis made a break down the right. The supporting Will Bowers forced the Pewsey defender to knock the ball forward into the path of No. 8 Chris Tanner, who strolled under the posts for a fortuitous try.
Pewsey Vale narrowed the lead with a try of their own. A well-worked backs moved created space out wide for the winger to score in the corner, making it 12-8 to Fairford at the break.
Fairford struggled for most of the second half to gain any continuity in their play and after a spell of good defending Pewsey took the lead.
After several last-ditch tackles, the Pewsey fly half broke the defence to land an outstretched arm over the line which put his side ahead.
The home side added a penalty late on, leaving Fairford needing a try to win.
After a continued spell of possession, Fairford tried to drive over the line but some excellent Pewsey defence meant they held out until the ball was knocked on over the line as the game came to a close.
Fairford's intensity in the last five minutes was not matched throughout the game and Pewsey were deserved winners.