BRIDPORT earned a hard-fought victory against a strong Dorchester team and took with it a bonus point, which helped them maintain third spot in Dorset & Wilts Two South.

The Blues playing several young players who have come through the club’s system put early pressure on the home side, which saw Mitch Waters make a clean break from the back of a line-out and scythe through the Dorchester defence to score near the posts. Richard Lazell converted.

From the kick-off, the hosts exerted pressure and won a scrum in the Bridport 22 and poor cover tackling enabled the Dorchester wing to go over in the corner for an unconverted try.

The Coburg Road outfit kicked out on the full and from the scrum the Blues earned a penalty. From the resulting line-out in the Dorchester 22, Waters drove into the heart of the defence and quick ball allowed Lazell to outpace the cover defence and run round behind the posts for his first try for the club, which he also converted.

The Blues then seemed to relax and almost allowed Dorchester to add to their score before going in at half-time 14-5 ahead.

At the start of the second half, Bridport conceded a penalty from the kick-off and Dorchester gained a second penalty which they converted to bring the score to 14-8.

A series of handling errors saw Dorchester threatening the Bridport line but an attempted chip through was charged down, the ball bouncing kindly for Richard Pearce who outpaced the cover defence and ran in from 60 metres.

Waters and Daragh McCouglin combined well from midfield and Freddie Woolner’s chip through just went over the dead-ball line.

Ollie Levis was then sin-binned for a relatively innocuous high tackle and despite being down to 14 men, Bridport looked to have closed out the game when, after some Dorchester pressure in their half, saw a loose ball kicked through and again the ball bounced straight into the hands of Pearce who ran in for his second try under the posts. Freddie Woolner converted.

Dorchester then had a period of intense pressure in the Bridport 22 resulting in their full-back scoring in the corner for an unconverted try. With about 10 minutes to go, Bridport again allowed Dorchester back into their 22 and poor covering back after a chip through allowed Dorchester to score, the try not being converted leaving the Blues 26-18 in front.

However, Bridport remained calm and in the final minutes good handling saw the ball passed down the line to Nathan Herbert whose well-timed pass allowed Lazell to run in at the corner for his second try.

The Blues next home game is on Saturday against Oakmeadians (3pm).