Knight keen to build on end-of-year form

Havant's Pete Austin Picture: Mick Young
Havant's Pete Austin Picture: Mick Young

Portsmouth out to turn tables on Cranleighans

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Havant coach Will Knight insists his team can go from strength to strength in the second half of their London one south campaign.

Knight believes his team are capable of starting the year with a win against Chobham in front of their own supporters at Hooks Lane.

Havant spent much of the first half of the campaign in the bottom three as they struggled to find any kind of consistency.

Two wins and a draw in the five games before the Christmas break, though, took Havant out of the relegation zone.

Now Knight wants them to climb higher.

‘I am very keen to see us build on the progress we made in our last few games,’ said Knight.

‘We showed against second-placed Chichester that we are capable of competing with the top teams in our league.

‘That has been the picture for a lot of our games in the opening months.

‘Unfortunately, in a number of close games, the results have gone the wrong way.

‘Our focus has to be to change that.

‘To do that we need to improve in a couple of areas that will enable us to close games out when we get into a winning position.

‘We need to be better organised in defence at times and more clinical when we get ourselves into scoring positions.’

Knight has to make a number of enforced changes for tomorrow’s game because of injury and unavailability.

Front-row forwards Pete Austin and Justin Powell are ruled out by injury and a couple of their university players are still on vacation.

‘Fourth-placed Chobham beat us earlier in the season but I believe this is a game we can get a result from,’ said Knight.

United Services Portsmouth face a tricky trip across the Solent to take on the Isle of Wight in Hampshire one.

Services are one of six clubs involved in a dogfight for promotion and know they can’t afford to slip-up.

‘The promotion chase is going to go to the wire,’ said Services Director of Rugby Simon Burns.

‘We will have to be on our mettle because the Isle of Wight are always awkward opponents.

‘They never give up and we have to make sure we deal with any problems they pose us.’

Hooker, Dave Reed faces a fitness test but second-row pair Sid Little and Alex Matthews return.