STRUGGLING Bridport put up a brave fight against Sherborne Seconds but were defeated 39-13 in their Wadworth 6X Dorset & Wilts One South clash at the Brewery Ground.

Barring a withdrawal from another team, or a reprieve from the league, the Blues will be relegated to Two South with the gap to Puddletown now an insurmountable 17 points with two games to play.

In front of a large crowd who had just enjoyed the club’s annual Vice Presidents’ lunch, a still injury-depleted Blues soon put Sherborne under pressure from the kick-off.

However, a couple of soft penalties enabled Sherborne to move into the Blues’ 22 and from a quickly taken tap they went over near the posts for a converted try.

Bridport again worked well from the kick-off with both Mitch Waters and Dave Cutting making good ground. The Blues’ scrum was holding up well and from a strong scrum on halfway were able to force an error as Nathan Herbert picked up the loose ball and ran in under the posts with Waters converting for 7-7.

Sherborne were soon on the offensive but the Blues’ defence held up well. Bridport were unable to clear their lines for any distance and after a 22-metre line out the Sherborne backs combined well to score an unconverted try in the corner.

This time the Blues were able to drive into the Sherborne 22 with the forwards backing up well and forcing Sherborne to concede three quick penalties in a row. Unfortunately Waters was only able to convert one of them and the half-time score was 12-10.

The second half was sadly a mirror image of many of the games this season as the Blues were forced to make substitutions for a couple of key players and their defence began to weaken with Sherborne scoring two tries and a penalty to Waters’ single penalty for Bridport.

With the score looking reasonable at 25-13 and reflecting the spirited defence of the Blues, they sadly tired in the final 10 minutes allowing Sherborne to score two converted tries.

Bottom side Bridport travel to Salisbury Seconds on April 6.