The 1st XV suffered their biggest of three defeats in a row so far this season as they lost 77-5 at Havant yesterday to stay rooted to the foot of London 1 South writes Brian Seeney.

Gos were outclassed and literally outflanked by a team that Gos Head Coach Barry Bridgman believes will be in the top four come next April along with Tottonians who were conquerors of his team 5-55 seven days before.

The match started disastrously for Gos when Havant got the first of their 12 tries after only 37 seconds.

During the first 15 minutes, Gos had some good spells in the Havant 22 when the home side were a man down to a yellow card.

But Gos failed to capitalise, were 15-0 down after 22 minutes and then conceded two tries and a conversion within three minutes. The last of Havant's five first half tries came a minute from the half-time break for 34-0.

Twelve points in the first four minutes of the second half were followed by the only Gos score of the day when the pack scrambled over and flanker Simon Trivett got the congratulations in the 54th minute.

Five more second half tries (three converted) completed the rout which was a bigger win than Havant had managed at the end of last season when Gos lost 47-0.

"It might have given us a bit of confidence when we were camped in their 22 for three or four minutes and had three or four drives at their line but unfortunately we ended up coming away with nothing and you can't do that at this level," said Bridgman.

"You have to come away with something whether it's a try or penalty and we didn't and straightaway we got punished for it when they came out and scored again.


Try time for Trivett. Simon Trivett scores yesterday. Photo: Chris Roberts. More pictures in the Photo Gallery shortly.

"I thought our pack acquitted itself quite well for the first 60 minutes and early in the game I thought we might hang on a bit. But then Havant did what other teams do to us and scored quick tries and that was the end of it then. The pack ran out of steam and we struggled

"I don't think heads went down. I just think we weren't capable of responding and we just weren't good enough on the day at all. What you don't want to do though is give away tries after 37 seconds.

"We tended to play the wrong game and let them come on to us too much and we weren't defending particularly well and were standing off people too much and you can't do that with a side like Havant.

"They always had left and right options off their ball carrier and they were using that really well with really good support play. And like Totts last week, when Havant got a chance they executed it.

"We did some good chase back tackles but you can't rely on that. The score could have been more and that's the bad news.

"It's difficult to find too many positives in it. The lineout went really well again - we lost only one of our own and spoilt two of theirs so we were better than parity but we were destroyed by naivety in defence especially in the first half.

"We are winning ball but we didn't really have a platform to work off. We are not taking it forward and we are ending up more or less where we started instead of going forward with it. We are not really penetrating at all with our attack.

"These are all things that can be fixed at training.

"There are only two choices here - you either give up or keep going and I'm not going to give up.

"You play rugby to win and it's a difficult day when you don't win and three hammerings in a row don't help.

"I think if nothing else though this has given us a benchmark of what we need to do and be like and how we need to try to get ourselves up to a decent enough level to compete for the whole game."

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