MARLBOROUGH moved up to sixth in South West One East following a 31-24 victory over Buckingham on Saturday.

After Sherborne’s loss to Royal Wootton Bassett and victory over the team they had previously been sat below, Marlborough moved two spots up the division courtesy of their narrow success.

Saturday’s hosts were once again forced into fielding a different team due to the ever-growing injury list.

However, the changes did at least give Willie Mataitini his first cap while youngster Ben Wilmot was again called up.

Marlborough started strongly playing up the slope and into a strong head wind.

The new back row trio of James Marshall, Todd Johnston and James Farrell worked extremely well together and gave Marlborough a solid platform from which to play.

After only five minutes, Ovini Tuitoga finished a very well-worked try – featuring some excellent footwork – to score while Will Grant converted.

Buckingham were causing Marlborough a number of problems with their physical game, but the Marlborough defence stood up well to the onslaught and dug deep.

Then, after twenty minutes, Solomone Aniseko scored the home side’s second try to put Marlborough 12 points to the good.

The Common outfit continued their blistering start with a third try 10 minutes before the break – fly-half Daniel Jones scored an excellent individual try before the conversion was once again missed.

From the kick-off, Marlborough gave away a soft penalty and Buckingham kicked for touch to set up their first try from the ensuing set piece.

The visitors’ second try came from the last play of the first half, however, both of the conversions were missed, and Marlborough took a 17-10 led into the break.

The score remained this way until the 70th minute when Mitieli Vulikijapani pounced on a Buckingham handling error and ran 50 metres to score – Daniel Jones converted to push Marlborough 14 points ahead.

Not long after, Kane Marafono finished over the line following some excellent handling by Marlborough’s back line, which Jones converted.

But just as the scoring seemed done, Buckingham bagged a fantastic try which started from their own goal line to snatch a bonus point.