Basingstoke this week played host to Portsmouth 2’s, looking to extend their league winning run to 17 from 17. This week saw a debut to Roger Moorhouse who took up a spot on the bench in a strong Stoke squad.
The first half saw ‘Stoke get off to a slow start, not getting their first try until 12 minutes in. After some good phase play, the ball found its way to prolific winger Michael West, who dotted down in the corner. A further 20 minutes followed before ‘Stoke doubled their lead through scrum half George Hemmings, whose good support capitalised on a strong line break. The half was closed from another score from fly half David Lambert, stepping in for the injured Kurtis Eagle. More good support work saw him cross the line to make the score at the half 15-0.
The bonus point was secured only 2 minutes into the second half by fullback James Savine, who cut a strong line at serious pace to score under the posts. Hemmings converted to make the score 22-0. At no point did Portsmouth look like breaking down Basingstoke’s defence, and the hosts superior fitness started to show. Lambert scored a second after some swift backs play before securing his hat trick with another try. The support play from ‘Stoke today was relentless which was shown by how many line breaks they were able to convert into points. Hemmings converted Lamberts 3rd try before doing the same again after replacement Sean McDermott powered over the line, making the final score 41-0 to the hosts who looked in control for the entirety.
A few claims were certainly made for starting shirts in the upcoming cup fixture vs US Portsmouth this weekend. Stoke look forward to welcoming the team from the south coast who currently sit 4th in London South West 3, it will be a good measure on the progress the team have made since last season as Basingstoke look to win a league and cup double.