'Massive' game for Tottonians

Daily Echo: Injured - Tottonians' Nick Jones Injured - Tottonians' Nick Jones

Tottonians get an opportunity to close the gap on London 2 South-West table-toppers Gosport & Fareham at the weekend.

Third-placed Totts head down the M27 looking like the only side in the division in a position to put pressure on the leading two.

But coach Gavin Williams knows Gos – still unbeaten this season – will pose a formidable challenge.

He said: “It’s a massive game. We know it will be exceptionally tough but the lads are in a good frame of mind and will give a good account of themselves.

“I’m not saying the promotion race would be over if we lost – we have both Gosport and Guildford to come at home yet – but certainly it would make it more difficult.

“We want to get something out of the game and it’s more than a bonus point, we want to win.”

Nathan Burns steps into the front row to replace injured Nick Jones and centre Faisil Mutiti starts at centre after making a successful return to the first team last week after a long-term injury.

Tottonians play Trojans in eight days but will be wishing their rivals well in the meantime.

The Stoneham Lane side have home advantage over Guildford tomorrow and victory over the second-placed side would be satisfying for Totts as well as Trojans.

Winchester hit the M3 to play Effingham and Leatherhead, with a squad likely to show up to six changes from the one that beat London Cornish at home last week.

Coach Andy Fields is delighted that Rob Rees and Charlie Pascoe are back at training after picking up injuries in pre-season friendlies. Rory Thorne is also back to further strengthen the pack.

Again, a good result for Winchester will benefit another Hampshireside.

Portsmouth are third-from-bottom and can leapfrog Effingham if they defeat rock bottom Teddington at home and the Winchester result goes their way.

Full rugby preview in today's Daily Echo

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