Havant aim to ruin Brighton's new year

Will Knight wants the real Havant to stand up as they start the new year with an exciting home clash against Brighton at Hooks Lane on Saturday (3pm).

Thursday, 3rd January 2019, 10:38 am
Updated Thursday, 10th January 2019, 11:37 am
Jake Hewett is back in contention to play for Havant at Hooks Lane against Brighton. Picture: Keith Woodland

The head coach insists his players are relishing the chance to topple the London one south leaders.

They will want to put things right after the heavy defeat they suffered in Sussex at the start of the season.

Knight is certainly demanding an improved performance.

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The quality within his Havant squad has not been seen regularly yet this season and they need to start demonstrating what they are capable of.

He said: '˜Brighton inflicted our biggest defeat for a long time and we didn't feel our display on that day truly represented who we are.

'˜It was disappointing, both for the individual players and us as a squad.

'˜They ran through us and and it was a poor performance.

'˜I am expecting to see the real Havant out there. 

'˜It will be disappointing if we roll over in the same way and I am not anticipating that happening again.

'˜We started to see the green shoots of recovery in the games leading up to the Christmas break.

'˜There was more of the defensive grit that Havant have always been associated with.

'˜It provided a definite buzz around the club and we must maintain that.

'˜The players are itching to have a crack at the top team in the league.

'˜There is nothing we would like more than to ruin Brighton's new year.

'˜Whatever the result I am confident it will be a lot closer this time around.'

The first half of the season proved difficult for the Hooks Lane team.

But Knight believes they will be much stronger now.

Successive home wins against Tottonians and Camberley restored a lot of confidence.

Because they played so many games away due to their ground improvements they now have a run of matches at Hooks Lane.

They don't play away again until March.

Knight added: '˜We are not naive enough to think all our problems have gone away.

'˜However we are starting to get players back.

'˜There is also a determination in the camp not to be beaten on our own patch.

'˜We are getting used to playing on our new pitch.

'˜Though the playing conditions are perfect we are learning that we still have to play the right rugby in the right areas.'

Tristan Trehan is back in contention.

Jake Hewett and Jerome Trail also return after injury.