Bridgman tells Gosport to secure status with a victory

Rob Impey. Picture: Chris Moorhouse

Pair of wins needed for Gosport to avoid drop

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Barry Bridgman wants Gosport & Fareham to secure their London two south west status with a victory over Effingham & Leatherhead tomorrow.

A success for the Dolphin Park outfit would see them avoid relegation and stay in the division for another season.

Although they’re still not mathematically safe, the seventh-placed hosts are favourites to stay up.

Gosport’s survival will also be guaranteed if Eastleigh fail to win this weekend.

Bridgman has told his team to do the business and not rely on other results.

The coach said: ‘We need to make sure ourselves by getting the points we need to survive.

‘Our win at London Exiles in our last game was a crucial one.

‘It gave us a bit more breathing space.

‘Earlier in the season, this game against Effingham would have been regarded as a banker.

‘Since then, though, they have improved and hauled themselves off the bottom.

‘I am expecting it to be a stern test.

‘Our home performances this season have not been too bad.’

Meanwhile, Fareham Heathens go into their clash against Millbrook at Cams Alders knowing they’ll be competing in the inaugural season of the Hampshire Premiership, which starts next campaign.

Buoyed by a success at Overton last time out, Heathens are keen to keep the pressure on the teams above them – including Millbrook.

Bernie Rhodes is adamant his troops are capable of delivering a victory if they’re at their best.

The director of rugby said: ‘We had a great victory away at Overton but that now counts for nothing as our focus is on this game.

‘We have not beaten Millbrook for some time but we always have a tough battle with them.

‘If we play to our best we know we are capable of beating them.

‘We had a real arm wrestle at Redbridge Lane earlier in the season and were unlucky to come away with nothing.’

Winger Steve Devoy and number-eight Harry King both scored two tries in the success over Overton are will keep their spots in the Heathens’ starting line-up.

Head coach Dave Wheaton added: ‘We missed out on grabbing any points against Millbrook earlier in the season but we know we have improved while they seem to have had a slight dip in form.

‘It would be good to take advantage if we can but we need a solid 80 minutes from the team.’