Bideford coach Simon Morrell remains confident his bottom-of-the-table side can turn the corner before it is too late.

Leaders Sidmouth defeated Bideford 29-13 on Saturday to leave them winless at the bottom.

Pat Sanders slotted two penalties and the extras after a Simon Mitchell try for the visitors.

It is round nine of 26 this Saturday when St Austell pay a visit and Bideford, already 10 points adrift, really could to with a win.

Bideford gave Sidmouth a scare despite injury problems starting before kick-off when stand-off Shaun East was injured.

Front-row injuries forced Bideford to ask for uncontested scrums, which meant shedding a player to comply with league rules. A yellow card after that did not help.

Morrell is nothing if not an optimist, even if his optimism is tinged with a degree of realism.

“We know it’s going to take something special, if we are to remain in this division – and that is exactly what we are aspiring to achieve,” said Morrell.

“We genuinely believe we can play our way out of this.

“We played for 50 minutes with 14 men and for a brief spell with 13 – and were only a score behind in the 74th minute. That’s respectable.

“That said, we won’t use that as an excuse. We prepare to win every game and, ultimately, came up short.

But we can sense that we are on the brink of producing some excellent rugby.”