Portsmouth off to a winning start to the 2016/17 season with a hard-fought win over Portland ( match report by Mark Lewis )
Portsmouth 9 – Portland 6
- PCWP v Portland & Weymouth Water Polo Club (friendly)
- Date: Thursday 3rd November 2016 21:00
- Venue: Mountbatten Centre – Portsmouth
With it feeling like a long layoff over the summer period, Portsmouth were looking to start the new season as they had left off – more victories please! What a perfect way to kick things off than with a “friendly” against old rivals, Portland and Weymouth.
Portsmouth had last met with Portland in a friendly back in March with a Portsmouth victory of 9-7. In this rematch, Portland looked in no mood to go down early doors and the first quarter saw almost a full 8 minutes of ‘arm-wrestling’ in which no fouls or goals were conceded. Both keepers were tested with Adam making several fine saves and Portsmouth shots not challenging the Portland keeper enough. To Portland’s credit they continued to apply the pressure and gained a 2 goal lead at the close of the first quarter.
Portland extended their lead early in the second quarter and Portsmouth were in danger of letting the game slowly slip out of view. But up steps (or should that be swims?) Paul, with a lovely break and 1-on-1 with the goal keeper, showing fine experience to coolly scored Pompy’s first goal of the game and reduce the deficit. Portland again got a break on Portsmouth and extended the lead once more though a fine quick attack.
At the half way mark, coach Trev was keen to keep heads high and with only 3 goals in it, a cracking team performance in defence had kept Portland out though they were struggling on the counter attack.
In the third quarter Portsmouth came out on the attack. Paul again playing a pivotal role passing into Mark who was in position deep in the pit. Mark was able to get away a reverse arm shot and catch the keeper by surprise. Portsmouth were now only 1 goal behind and momentum was shifting.
Under pressure, Portland went a man down. With some lovely passing around the D, the ball came to Adam who, showing his skill in open play is equal to this keeping skills, fired an absolute rocket in the top left. Next it was Jack’s turn to pull Portsmouth level – in another man-up situation with Jack providing the fire power.
Portland were not done and were again showing fine counter attack play to score another 2 goals going into the last quarter 6-4 up.
It was now or never for Portsmouth and fitness was to play a huge part in the closing 10. Paul got things moving with the first goal of the quarter. James was next to score after making a break of his own, Portsmouth working the ball forwards quickly on a turn over. Paul completed his hat trick and Jack doubled his score from a quick corner before Zac ended the night with a finely finished goal to leave the final score 9-6.
- Paul P: 3 (MOTM)
- Mark L: 1
- Jack W: 2
- Adam P: 1
- James J: 1
- Zac E: 1
Next match vs Navy away Thursday 24th November 2016 at 1900