Havant eyes on top prize

Peter Hopson. Picture: Paul Jacobs (131682-1)
Peter Hopson. Picture: Paul Jacobs (131682-1)
James Vince. Picture: Sarah Standing (170455-8793)

Vince relishing ‘second chance’

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Pete Hopson admits Havant’s minds are even more focused on league success after their Southern Electric T20 Cup shock.

The title-chasers host Hampshire Academy in the Southern Electric Premier League premier division tomorrow after they kept the pressure on leaders South Wilts with a win at Ventnor last week.

But they went down to Lymington in the t20 last Sunday to end their hopes of regaining the crown in the shorter format, while Sarisbury lost to South Wilts in the other semi-final.

The player-coach said: ‘We were really pleased with the win at Ventnor but Sunday was one of those games where you walk off the pitch a bit speechless.

‘We didn’t do some things well but a lot of credit has to go to them because they played incredibly well.

‘We’ve got over it, we have moved on and now we are focused on winning the league. It has added importance.

‘We value the league title slightly more than the t20, even though the t20 final is great because you get to play at the Ageas Bowl.

‘I wouldn’t know if others agree but I would value the league more as it is over 18 weeks of the season rather than five or six games.

‘And we want to keep the run going in the league.’

Burridge, meanwhile, are suddenly in deep relegation trouble after slipping to the foot of the table as the premier division returns to a 50-over format.

Rick Ankers’ side went down to Alton in the last round of timed games last weekend and now visit Bashley (Rydal).

Meanwhile, Ventnor travel to Alton.

In division two, Portsmouth still have outside promotion possibilities as they visit Hartley Wintney.

But Havant II’s trip to bottom-club Langley Manor has become vital as they bid to plot their way to safety.

In division three, Portsmouth & Southsea’s relegation fate already looks sealed as they travel to Fair Oak.

Waterlooville, meanwhile, saw their late surge towards the promotion places take a hit with defeat last week.

But they could be rekindled if they can beat Basingstoke & North Hants II.