Havant's perfect opening on much-anticipated return to competitive action following promotion

Havant made the dream start to life back in the London & South East Premier Division with a thumping victory.

Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 10:04 am
Jacob Knight points skywards as he heads over for a debut try. Picture: Neil Marshall

Will Knight's men, playing in their first competitive fixture since February 2020, ran out resounding 51-16 winners over Sidcup in their first match back at level 5 standard after being granted promotion at the end of the previous campaign.

Flying winger Scott Morris weighed in with a treble of tries as Havant ran in a total of eight to surpass a half-century of points against Sidcup at Hooks Lane.

Harry Carr chipped in with two tries of his own from the opposite flank while Jacob Knight, Ben Holt and Cameron Smith all went over for debut scores.

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Scott Morris scored a hat-trick of tries in the win over Sidcup. Picture: Neil Marshall

Head coach Knight says he could not have wished for a better start, with his side hitting the summit after the opening round of matches.

He said: ‘As a return to level 5 rugby, in front of a huge crowd at Havant, on a hot, sunny lovely day - it was about as good as it gets.

‘It’s a while since Havant have been at that level and once you play in the league we were in last season, you know a lot of the teams, you sort of know what’s coming each week.

‘This was a step back into unknown, although we’ve played Sidcup in the past, we haven’t played them for a number of years.

Ben Holt bagged a try on his Havant debut. Picture: Neil Marshall

‘It was really good to get back out there and actually see what were doing last season and in training this season working.

‘To be as clinical as we were, we really were clinical in terms of our attack, aligned to an absolutely rock solid defence.’

Head coach Knight says his team could be somewhat of a surprise package to clubs in the early stages of the season having come up from London One South.

However, he admitted it'll difficult to get an understanding of what to expect from teams given such a long stoppage since rugby was ground to a halt in March 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Knight added: ‘We haven’t played against a number of these teams for a long time but they’ll know a little bit about what to expect when coming to Hooks Lane.

‘It’s a new league and it’s also a league which is return from 18 months without any activity for all the clubs.

‘I think that’s an interesting piece in itself in terms of clubs have survived, thrived and where some may have struggled a little bit.’