Portsmouth boosted by superb first-half showing

Gareth Richards.  Picture: Neil Marshall (171124-384)
Gareth Richards. Picture: Neil Marshall (171124-384)
Gareth Fitzpatrick is unavailable for Portsmouth. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (171564-1)

Portsmouth wary of surprises at Basingstoke

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A BARNSTORMING first-half performance set Portsmouth on their way to a comprehensive 54-7 London three south west win at Teddington.

The game was over as a contest by half-time as the visitors raced into a 43-0 lead.

Director of Rugby, Jim Pearce used a late set-back to help inspire his team before the game.

The visitors lost outside half Matt Farnes to injury during the warm up and had to reshuffle their three-quarters.

Gareth Richards moved from the centre to replace Farnes and it paid dividends.

‘We challenged the players beforehand to go out fighting and not let the disruption affect them,’ said Pearce.

‘They did just that right from the start.

‘We scored our first try in the opening three minutes and took it on from there.

‘In the second half we had to play against the breeze and spent most of the time trying to run the ball out of our half.

‘Teddington came back at us a bit but we can’t be too critical after winning so well.’

Mark Ovens and Gareth Richards both got two tries, with Alex Duffus, Will Brock, Ian French, Tom Whitehouse and Sully Caucau also scoring a try each.

Stewart Davies added five conversions.

United Services Portsmouth remain unbeaten in Hampshire one after winning 26-10 at Alresford.

It sets Services up perfectly for their big floodlight cup derby against Portsmouth at Burnaby Road on Friday.

Southsea Nomads gave a good account of themselves despite losing 34-7 at unbeaten Hampshire two leaders Southampton.

In the first half Nomads were outstanding and restricted Southampton to only one try until things changed after the break.

‘Our first half performance was top drawer,’ said Nomads captain Ben Horrod.

‘As a team we are improving and if we keep building on performances like this then we can get ourselves into a good position.’

Nomads’ try was scored by Greg Stewart and converted by Jonathon Branston.