Morris boots Havant in vital clash with leaders
HAVANT have recalled veteran scrum-half Grant Morris as they face the task of toppling London 1 south leaders CS Rugby 1863.
The visitors have opted for the experience of the 37-year-old in a crucial game for their promotion ambitions.
With both regular scrum-halves ruled out by injury Havant were facing a problem.
Morris, a local school teacher, has interrupted his training for a charity boxing event, to help his club out.
Director of rugby Rob Matthews believes Morris could be perfectly suited for the game.
‘The pitch is likely to be wet and muddy and Grant plays like a fourth back-row player,’ said Matthews.
‘He is strong, aggressive and makes great sniping runs.
By linking well with the forwards he has the ability to get us onto the front foot. On a wet boggy are that can prove a key factor.’
It is the second successive game Havant have faced the team in pole position A fortnight ago they knocked Medway off their perch and now face their successors at Dukes Meadows.
The performance and result against Medway was highly encouraging.
All the coaching staff were impressed by the application of the players in what could have been an exceedingly difficult task.
They stood up to and got the better of a Medway side that had been putting other teams away by 40 or 50 points.
Matthews is convinced a repeat performance could see Havant get revenge for a rare home defeat earlier in the season at the hands of their hosts.
‘We have to demonstrate all the qualities we showed in our last game again this weekend,’ said Matthews.
‘At best the pitch is going to be very heavy, but I believe we have the strongest pack of forwards in our league.
‘The front five have shown since conditions have got heavier that they can dominate.
‘I also rate our three-quarters as the most talented at our level.
‘When both parts of the team click we are more than competitive with any team in our league.
‘This is a vital game for us if not the biggest of the season.
‘We have to make up seven or eight points on the top two if we want to maintain the chance of promotion.
‘If we win it keeps us in the mix.
‘All three of us have some tough games to play between now and the end of the season.
‘Points will be dropped and there will be a few twists and turns I am sure.’
Ben Brierley returns on the wing after missing the Medway game..
In the forwards Joe Davis has work commitments and is replaced by Liam Mellor.
Tom Blackburn is back in the front row after serving his red card suspension.