Petersfield must be prepared to avoid upset against struggling Ellingham & Ringwood

Nick Blumlein. Picture: Vernon Nash (110120-040)Nick Blumlein. Picture: Vernon Nash (110120-040)
Nick Blumlein. Picture: Vernon Nash (110120-040) | JPIMedia Resell
Hampshire Premier leaders Petersfield want to head into a month break with a victory.

After their game at lowly Ellingham & Ringwood this weekend, they take a much-needed rest from league action before they see out the final three games.

Petersfield hope the lay-off will go a long way towards helping the squad's extensive injury list.

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When the teams met earlier in the season, Field effectively had the game won by half time due largely to the penalty kicking of stand-off Nick Blumlein.

Whilst recent results have not gone Ellingham's way, they ran Havant close and gave second-placed Alton problems.

In their last home game, they defeated Millbrook who are 20 points above them.

Petersfield will be looking to prevent an upset by learning the lessons from their uncharacteristic first half against Sandown & Shanklin last week.

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Coach Jim Pearce said: ‘Sitting at the top means we are there to be shot at and teams will raise their game against us.

‘We cannot afford to be complacent and the players need to be switched on from the build-up to kick-off.

‘This game is a tricky one for us.

‘In the last five meetings between the teams, it has been the home side that has won.

‘Our squad depth will be challenged but we hope the players rise to the challenge, train hard and go back to understanding the principles in controlling the game.’

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n Locksheath Pumas face a titanic top-of-the-table clash at Chichester II.

It is second versus top with all to play for.

The visitors are without scrum half Iain Fraser, so Nick Destefano switches from outside half.

Joe Bennetts is back in the side at prop forward and skipper James Campbell gets his first start in six weeks after injury.

In the three quarters, Toby Wilson is on the wing while Robbie Connell switches to full-back.

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The replacements bench has a lot of strength with Rob Hylands, Tom O’Grady and Jonathan Elsmore - out since October due to injury - all featuring.

Head coach Liam Moggeridge said: ‘We have had to make a few changes but the squad is strong and we are fortunate to get some quality players back from injury.

‘It is going to be a tough match but we are well prepared.’

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