Jim Dixon writes…
Portsmouth played their final warm up game at Rugby Camp, thier first home game for goodness knows how long. The match took place following the Presidents Lunch attended by 80 members who enjoyed a very good lunch with lots of tales of yester year.
Gosport got proceedings under way playing into a stiff breeze but were soon on the attack with their forwards putting the home side under pressure. Portsmouth managed to hold them at bay and gradually managed to work their way up to the Visitor’s 22 when they were awarded a penalty which was converted giving them a 3 – 0 lead. More pressure from the visiting pack saw Portsmouth again defending well, managing to repel several drives for the line. Eventually Portsmouth again worked their way up field and were awarded a second penalty but the kick went wide. Gosport then had a chance to level the score with a penalty in front of the posts but the kick went wide and half time whistle went with Portsmouth hanging on to a 3 – 0 lead.
The second half saw Portsmouth take advantage of the following wind and were soon camped deep in the Gosport half. Eventually from a good catch and drive the forwards drove over the line for the first Portsmouth try awarded to Anthonh Fooks. The conversion missed and the lead was now 8 – 0 with about 60 minutes played. A second push over try scored by Matt Hoban soon followed giving the home side a 13 – 0 lead as the conversion just missed. This was soon followed by a well taken try by the backs which increased their score to 18 – 0. Again the conversion missed. From the re-start Portsmouth caught the ball and spun it wide which enabled them to score their 4th. try under the posts. The conversion was successful giving them a deserved 25 – 0 lead and the final whistle went.
A harder game than last week was just what the team needed especially with a changed pack. Portsmouth stuck to the game plan well throughout the match, defending well especially in the first half. And better fitness served them well in the second half. Yet again the whole squad performed well throughout the game although some of the passing was a bit ‘hit & miss’.
Next week sees the start of the League season with an away game to Andover, never an easy place to go to, so it will be interesting to see how that goes.