Great wins for Fareham Heathens and Havant Ladies
Fareham Heathens come out on top in a thrilling double-header encounter with Fordingbridge 24-18 win at Cams Alders.
In doing so they picked up four much-needed points in the league and advanced to the second round of the Hampshire Bowl.
The home side were forced to draft in extra players as a result of injuries sustained in the Veterans game the night before, when Fareham lost 21-17 against Locksheath Vets after extra time.
‘I have the utmost praise for all those involved because Fordingbridge are fourth in the league and are a very good side,' said senior coach Dave Wheaton.
'But then so are we when we focus and pull together as one.
'The build-up in training was intense, and the players put in maximum effort.
‘We knew Fordingbridge had quality backs but with our forwards controlling the game for the most part, we were very rarely on the back foot.
'Superb maul and lineout work gave us great go forward ball.'
Man of the match Rikky Curtis, at centre, caused havoc with the Fordingbridge defence.
James Whitefield yet again led from the front in the forwards with some superb ball carries and defensive tackling.
'It didn't all go our way, though, and we still need to tighten up in defence,’ Wheaton added.
'Our first up tackling needs to improve, although the slippery, wet conditions didn't help.'
Havant Ladies continued their superb start to the season with an impressive 41-27 win at Canterbury Ladies.
Captain Natasha Bullock felt the key to success was maintaining their discipline in a competitive contest.
'This was an awesome win because Canterbury hadn't been beaten in over a season,' said Bullock.
'We kept our heads and our nerve, particularly when the teams were level at 21-21 for a long time.
'The feeling is that we are starting to gel as a team and acquire greater strength in depth.
'It was a tight game and Canterbury never gave up.
'This was only our second away game of the season and we are still getting used to the process involved in travelling for a couple of hours before the game.'
Pat Elliott opened the scoring with a try which Katie Hopkins converted.
Jodie Shepherd, Bullock, Marlyse Sisre and Fiona Beaumont scored the other Havant tries.
Hopkins contributed three more conversions and a penalty.
American Sisre is proving a great acquisition after moving into the area to start university three weeks ago, and had an outstanding game at full-back.