Petersfield beat second-placed Gosport & Fareham RFC 43-15 to make it six wins from six and open up a five-point lead at the top of the Hampshire Counties One table.
It was anticipated that Gosport would give a good account of themselves and from the kick-off they gained possession and advanced up field, well into the hosts’ half.
A scrum for Petersfield on their own 22 secured the ball for Alex Duffus, Nick Blumlein and George Davis to pass to full back Tom Land who made inroads to Gosport’s half.
Good support play from second rows Zak Jenkins and Franco Tomic saw the ball move back to the centre through Rhys Bowen, where Greg Jansen looked to be clear to score. Scrambled defence by Gosport threatened Jansen, who offloaded in the tackle to supporting back row and captain Matt Momber who dived over for a try converted by Blumlein.
Gosport replied with a penalty for offside in front of the posts to make it 7-3.
The restart was cleanly taken by Tomic, who made several metres before passing to Jansen. He stepped the Gosport defence to pass inside to Blumlein, who ran a superb line to slice through Gosport’s defence and score a try which he converted himself.
Land was next to score after some smart passing and strong running from Sampson, who with 15 metres to go passed to full back Land on the left wing to touch down for an unconverted try.
Gosport replied with a deep kick into the left corner of Field’s half, where their chasing centre won the ball and moved across the Petersfield defensive line. Petersfield narrowed their defence and Gosport passed the ball to their right wing, where an accelerating back latched on to the ball to touch down for an unconverted try.
Field’s front row of Jackson Clark, Nic Wilde and Dan Luff then marched the visitors back off their scrum. The ball came back to Perkins who outwitted the visitors’ defence to lay the ball down at full stretch for a converted try.
Petersfield’s second row Jenkins then scored a converted try from a penalty line-out take by Perkins. Jenkins drove over to make it 33-8.
Petersfield used their bench in the second half, bringing on forwards Carl Sharrock and Mark Butcher. Andy Wood brought renewed energy to the back three.
Gosport looked less disturbed by the difficult conditions. Clark was yellow carded and Gosport had a player advantage for ten minutes.
Gosport’s persistence, ferocity of play and determination saw them cross the try line for a converted try.
Petersfield’s response was to score two more unconverted tries through Tomic and Sampson.
Petersfield’s second team cruised to a big 79-33 win against Kingsclere to put them at the top of their league.
The first team will travel to Trojans on Saturday (November 4).