Havant went into Saturdays game brimming with confidence after winning against the previously undefeated Sandown last week. This put Hav on the same points as Sandown and Winchester but with a far superior points difference, The Havant ‘A’XV machine sit at the top of the league.
This week Hav were to meet a potential banana skin game against Southampton who have has mixed results this season, their most notable being the 90 point thriller against Sandown where they would have felt hard done by to loose by just 2 points. With this in mind the game was prepared well for with Scott and Oz putting the team through their paces in the warm up.
The game kicked off and Hav attacked up hill on a very boggy pitch 4 at hooks lane. The start was fast and frantic but Hav soon settled into their stride and it was not long before the score board starting ticking. Some well worked moves and good strong defence saw 3 tries be scored in the first 20 mins. Southampton tried to hit back and used the downhill slope and kicking to try and pin Hav back and 2 good runners in the centres to try and penetrate the defence, but Havant had none of it. The defence was solid, organised and held firm and kept the resurgent visitors at bay.
The second half saw much of the same. The pack won most lines outs, with or without the throw and 4 or 5 scrums against the head from James Hewett. The back started to run great lines and linked well to run in yet more tries. The visitors were tiring and Hav used the slope well scoring 9 tries in total with 5 conversion making the final score 55-0. This was a good performance to keep us top of the league and miles ahead on points difference.
Move of the Match:
Many contenders for this. Before his injury in the first half, all the highlights involved Ali Hire and he was strolling towards a man of the match performance. A good offload from Bruce and a terrific angle from Pete followed by 2 side steps and a 50 metre sprint under the sticks was applauded by all. The winner, however much he gets fined, was lock Bruce Neil. His ability to look up and see a 2 on 1 with his younger brother John, followed by the realisation that he couldn’t pass that far meant a grubber kick behind the try line in the corner. This left a lot for John to do and a sprawling dive from the younger Neil saw a try scored in the corner!
Man of the Match:
This was decided on the day, but again many contenders. Ali Hire would have walked it, but as he could only walk off the pitch during the first half, the chance was gone. Jack Sykes with a combination of tacking and offensive running was a joy to behold. Tyler Anchor doesn’t know the meaning of the words ‘missed tackle’ and was awesome again. Jez Smith was running brutally and constantly beating the gain line. This weeks winner for his great line out work, speed around the pitch, tackling and support in order to gain quick ball for the backs, was Greg Williams. Well done Greg.
Charlie x 2 (plus 5 conversions)
After our match we then went to watch the conclusion of the first team game. This was a big game against a side further up in the table and when we joined it, the visitors had just scored to take a 2 point lead. With time ticking down the 1′s dug deep and the Hav No. 15 provided a moment of magic followed by great support from his team mates to score a converted try. After a nail biting last few minutes the Hav defence held out for a great win and Hooks Lane was a good place to be!