Fordingbridge two wins away from promotion to London 3 South-West

Mark Hammond of Fordingbridge and his colleagues are closing in on promotion

Mark Hammond of Fordingbridge and his colleagues are closing in on promotion

First published in Sport Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Rugby correspondent and sub-editor

Snows Group Hampshire 1 leaders Fordingbridge RFC are on the brink of the league title for only the second time in their history.

But it looks like being a nervy end to their 30th anniversary season – they are just one point ahead of second-placed Andover.

If Bridge take maximum points from their last two games – away to United Services Portsmouth tomorrow, and at home to Southampton next week – they will win automatic promotion to London 3 South West.

That will repeat the feat they managed in their 25th anniversary season.

However Fordingbridge know tomorrow’s task – against a Services side that was in the thick of the promotion fight just weeks ago – is huge and that Andover are poised to take advantage of any slip-ups.

The All Blacks have a superior points difference and travel to Romsey tomorrow before finishing off their season with a home clash against Overton.

Fordingbridge’s Rob Burrows said: “Andover’s superior points difference has been inflated by the fact that they were able to beat a weakened Alton side 107-3 last November.

“Only three weeks later we were awarded a walkover at home against Alton and so did not even have the opportunity to run up a huge points win.”

Bridge president John Mouland added: “Whatever the outcome to one of the most exciting and closest title races ever, we will celebrate a memorable season in style – and hopefully with promotion to London 3 South West”.

Third-placed Millbrook will battle to the end, as always, and make sure they are in a position to take advantage of any shock slips above them.

Brook take on relatively new neighbours Team Solent, who led Hampshire 1 for much of the early part of the season but have slipped to fifth.

Southampton will continue their fight to avoid relegation with a trip to Farnborough.

Second-from-bottom Isle of Wight can leapfrog Saints with home success over basement club Overton.

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