Banbury Bulls got back to winning ways in Midlands Two West South but they were made to fight all the way for their bonus-point victory at Droitwich.
James Kerr’s side emerged 32-17 victors on Saturday despite having to endure a frustrating first half when they struggled to get to grip with the conditions.
Numerous knock-ons and handling errors from Bulls gave the home side territory. Droitwich took advantage by slotting a penalty from straight in front of the posts and narrowly missed out on a six point lead when hitting the post with another very kickable penalty.
Another period of scrappy play followed as the two teams continued to struggle with the conditions.
Banbury’s first score came from a long clearance, the Droitwich full-back failed to gather and Sam Stoop dived on the loose ball for his first try in Banbury colours. Phillips was off target with the conversation but added a penalty for Bulls to go in 8-3 up at halftime.
Bulls sparked into life in the second half, the handling was better and they managed to put more phases together, and again looked dangerous on the counter attack.
Phillips went over from close range and converted his own try, quickly followed by Matt Goode who crossed the whitewash in almost the identical spot as Bulls established a 20-3 advantage.
Bulls had their tails up and were in the hunt for the bonus point try, attacking with far more confidence, and Jed Boyle was next to score under the posts after beating four would be tacklers with some neat footwork. An easy conversation followed for Phillips to extend the lead to 27-3.
Droitwich continued to show gritty determination and battled back to grab two late tries that turned out to be little more than consolation but Bulls will not be happy with the soft manner in which they were conceded.
Bulls went out on a high and crossed the line once more with a strong finish from Adam Walsh. Struggling with the windy conditions, Phillips missed again with the conversion.
But Bulls collected the restart and cleared the ball into touch to finish with five tries and a 32-17 bonus point victory.