Delight for Knights as Havant triumph

Joel Knight. Picture: Mick Young (132643-04)
Joel Knight. Picture: Mick Young (132643-04)
Tom Whitehouse. Picture: Neil Marshall (171730-81)

Pearce fires warning to triumphant Portsmouth

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Joel Knight grabbed a hat-trick of tries to help Havant to a 52-21 win over London one south basement side Staines.

It was a welcome return to winning ways for the Hooks Lane outfit, although they still remain third from bottom of the table.

Coach Will Knight was pleased with the way his team applied themselves in a game they knew they needed to win.

‘Even though Staines are bottom we didn’t expect them to be pushovers and so it proved,’ said the chief.

‘They made us work for it but we played with power and a bit more precision.

‘It wasn’t the perfect performance by any stretch of the imagination but we showed good application to get the job done.

‘We did our usual Havant thing of falling asleep for a period to let them back into it.

‘But then we pulled away as they struggled to contain our midfield.’

Havant raced out of the blocks with a good individual try from Loz Blackburn, converted by Joel Knight.

The visitors then had to wait until the half-hour mark before wing-forward Jarrad Hayler added a second converted try.

A Joel Knight penalty and a converted Pete Austin try seemed to sew things up at 24-0 early in the second half before Staines hit back with two converted scores.

The home side were awarded a penalty try for a collapsed maul and then exploited a lack of concentration in the Havant defence to score out wide.

‘At that stage Staines were only one score from getting right back into it and it was worrying,’ said Will Knight.

Fortunately his team stirred themselves to produce a strong finish.

Hayler was on hand to finish off a good line-out move for his second try of the game and Joel Knight then took charge with his treble.

‘We know we have to beat teams like Staines if we are to push our way up towards midtable,’ said the coach.

‘We finally racked up some points which we have been threatening to do for a while.

‘It was pleasing to see our replacements make an impact when they went on.

‘Next week we are at Chichester and will have to raise our game again.’