Portsmouth enjoying the magic of the cups as they aim for two finals
Portsmouth are looking to produce some cup magic in the next two weeks as they aim to reach two knock-out finals.
First up on Saturday they take on Trojans at Stoneham Lane in the semi final of the Hampshire Bowl (2.30pm). The winners will host Eastleigh in the final at the end of the month.
On Easter Saturday Portsmouth host Honiton in an even bigger semi-final of the RFU Senior Vase with a Twickenham final at stake.
Senior coach Neil McRoberts is excited by the prospect of cup success after missing out on promotion in the league.
He said: ‘The players are looking forward to the challenge and are really up for it. Both competitions are important to us.
‘Obviously the national cup game carries a bit more glamour but we are equally keen to retain our title.
‘As a club we have always been great supporters of the cup competitions. It is something we can be proud of.
‘We have had two tough league games against Trojans already this season.
‘They are the sort of side if you don’t get on top of early that grows in confidence.
‘It is important therefore we start well and control matters.
‘We must look to impose ourselves on the game.
‘The other thing we must not do is give away cheap points so keeping discipline will be vital.’
The experienced figure of Tim Snowdon returns to the back row after injury.
In the three-quarters Luke Simmons is back on the wing.
Front row forward Dan Sergeant who has missed a large part of the season with a knee injury is among the replacements.
His national league rugby experience with Worthing could prove a useful asset in the big game environment.
Meanwhile, Club Hampshire under-15s take on their Surrey counterparts at Imber Court on Sunday.
Hampshire are looking to build on their 14-12 win at Berkshire in their opening game.
Southsea Nomads will play their annual Ash Clarke memorial match.
The fixture rounds of the club’s season, the fixture pits the young Nomads against the veterans in a hotly-contested battle for bragging rights and the Ash Clarke Trophy.
Ash Clarke, 24, was a Nomad through and through, following in his father's footsteps by pulling the Nomads jersey on.
The fixture has two fantastic benefits, it allows Southsea Nomads to honour one of their family and raises money that Southsea Nomads donates to Air Ambulance Kent Surrey Sussex. The event is open to all who want to enjoy a great day of rugby at Langstone University Campus, Furze Lane.