Portsmouth had a disappointing day at Alton as that elusive first win still hasn’t happened with 34 – 7 loss putting them down to 11th. place on 3 points, just above next week’s opponents Basingstoke, who lost at home to Old Georgians 23 – 32 and are on 1 point and still winless. As a result of this win Alton move up to 9th.
Portsmouth got of to a reasonable start playing up the slope and into a cross wind. A good attacking move came to nothing when they were penalised for crossing, something that happened too often during the game. They had to defend for long periods in the first half as Alton pressed hard to score, but their defence held firm although Alton did manage to break through once only for their player to throw the ball forward as he dived over the line to score. Alton also had an opportunity to put points on the board with a penalty in front of the posts but the kick went wide. Portsmouth eventually got on the score board in the 35th. minute with a well taken try by Scott Weatherhead following some good work. Sam Foster was able to add the extras with a good touch line conversion and they took a 0 – 7 lead into half time.
The second half saw Portsmouth playing down the slope and with a slight wind advantage but it was Alton who struck first with a converted try following some good work by their 3’s taking the score to 7 – 7. Portsmouth were having problems getting into their stride and Alton soon added an unconverted try giving them a 12 – 7 lead on 57 minutes. Again Portsmouth had to defend for long periods and when they did get close to the Alton try line often took the wrong option thus losing the opportunity. Even a quick taken tap penalty 5 metres from the try line got knocked on. It seemed as though they were trying too hard and having to play catch up which is not ideal when things aren’t going your way. With 12 minutes left Alton were awarded a penalty following another Portsmouth error which stretched their lead to 15 – 7 but this was not an insurmountable score line and they kept battling away but too many penalties didn’t help their cause. 75 minutes into the second half Alton further extended their lead with another converted try taking the score to 22 – 7. A further converted try extended the lead to 29 – 7 and this was followed with an unconverted try as the final whistle went , taking their lead to 34 – 7.
This was a game between 2 poor sides with Alton making the most of their opportunities unlike Portsmouth, Injuries to key players Mark Ovens and Sam Foster didn’t help their cause but neither did careless handling and passing. They must tighten up their play and stop giving so many penalties away, something that has dogged them for some time. It could be argued that 2 or 3 Alton tries should have been stopped by better action from the Official but they still did enough to deserve their win. The problems are not insurmountable by any means but only hard work can rectify them. Lets hope that next week brings a better result. Don’t forget that with the clocks changing next week’s game will kick off at 2.30 p.m. at Rugby Camp.
TEAM: Rhys Bowen, Brad Atkins, Adam Parks-Dare
Sam Foster, Elloit Worrall
Dan Perry, Anthony Fooks, Aaron Beesley.
Elloit Davis, Mark Ovens,
Scott Weatherhead, Tom Barker, Luke Peters
Bench:Matt Howes, Tom Smith, Rokilibau Ratu Rusiate.