ANDOVER Rugby Club boss Andy Waite has urged his players to “wake up” to the danger of relegation after they suffered a disappointing 46-8 away defeat on Saturday.

The All Blacks travelled to the south-coast side hopeful of a result, with their opponents just a place above them in the London South West Division Two.

But Andover were well beaten on Saturday and Waite now says that relegation is a real possibility.

The director of rugby said: “There is no such thing as a team that is too good to go down and I’m afraid some of our players have to wake up to the fact that we need to now fight to stay in this league.

“Some of what we did today lacked discipline or structure and that was the difference between the sides.

“It looked at times like we were playing sevens on a beach.

“You have to earn the right to play champagne rugby and we didn’t earn it.”

Waite added: “We had a heart to heart afterwards and it helped clear the air, but from now on we have to work harder in training and stick to our game plan if we are to get out of this.

“We still have plenty of games we can win, but we need to start by at least improving our own performances.”

Andover started poorly on their return from the Christmas break, with three defensive howlers handing the hosts two tries and a penalty in the first quarter to take a 15-0 lead.

The Oakwood sponsored side forced their way back into the game with Tom Erskine and Jack Stott both going close and for the remainder of the half Andover hammered the Portsmouth defence.

Portsmouth defended manfully but had no answer when the excellent Tom Waite drove over from a neat lineout to score after constant pressure.

Andover then squandered several guilt edged chances with some poor attacking options, until just before the break a scrum penalty gave Charlie Waite the chance to pull within a score.

The All Blacks believed they were in with a real chance.

But soon after half time another charged down kick and a yellow card for Ben Ciccotti gifted Portsmouth the advantage.

Andover’s woes continued as down to 14 men a further converted try was conceded.

Then two more scores from a dropped pass and an interception were handed to the home side, even when the sides were back to even numbers.

At the death Portsmouth rubbed salt into the wound with a final effort from a lineout, to complete a miserable afternoon for Andover.