ANDREW Denham grabbed a hat-trick as Rams RFC maintained their 12-point advantage at the top of National Two South after coming away from Dings Crusaders with a 48-19 bonus-point victory.

It was the home side who made the initial breakthrough, however, outside centre Matt Smith rounding off a beautiful move with a try which was converted by Steve Plummer.

Rams replied, however, with a superb 20-minute passage of play which saw them seal the bonus-point before half time.

Firstly hooker Ben Henderson went over before his side secured a penalty try from a succession of collapsed scrums.

A remarkable solo effort from Henderson – who collected his own chip before powering over – extended the lead, with Denham then crossing to make it 24-7 at the interval.

Rams grabbed their fifth try three minutes into the second period, wing Conor Corrigan claiming an Alex Seers kick before racing away, but Dings kept themselves in the contest with Smith's second of the afternoon.

However, Rams re-asserted their authority and Corrigan grabbed a second with a virtual carbon-copy of his opening score, before Denham completed his treble with tries in the 58th and 75th minutes.

Dings did have the final say when hooker Thomas Anderson went over with a minute remaining, but it was too little too late, which left the Bristol men pointless for their afternoon’s work.

Rams’ head coach Seb Reynolds was delighted with the final score, but warned against complacency.

He said: “I was very pleased with this result because Dings are a good side with a defence which is difficult to break-down and you could see that from all their hard work in the first 20 minutes.

"Despite all our field position, you only have to make a slight error at this level and you get punished.

"Matt Smith is a very dangerous runner. We gave him half a chance and he took it, so bearing in mind that after 20 minutes we were 7-0 down away to a side with a good defence, I am really pleased with the way we responded”.

Rams are at home to Taunton Titans on Saturday (2.30pm).