BASINGSTOKE Bluefins Ladies waterpolo started their season in fine style with an 11-7 win over Portsmouth in the first friendly of the season.

Basingstoke travelled to the Mountbatten Centre keen to carry on the form of last season which ended with three straight wins.

The home side were stunned as in less than 90 seconds as Aimee Park netted twice and Megan Fletcher added a third.

By the first break, Portsmouth had reduced the lead to 3-2.

Playing with one sub was never going to easy for Basingstoke, but as the second quarter began the visitors showed that they were not going to let it affect their game.

Any hope Portsmouth might have had that the girls would sit back and conserve energy was quickly dashed, as again the first goal of the quarter fell to Park.

This was a great team goal, with all the players combining well to open up the defence before Emily Wiltshire picked out the perfect final pass to leave Park with a simple finish.

Portsmouth replied quickly to bring themselves back to a single goal deficit, but another goal apiece for both Park and Fletcher gave Basingstoke a comfortable lead at the half way point.

In the third quarter, the quality of the movement from players off the ball creating space was crucial at this point, and contributed to Hannah Wiles getting her first goal of the game, picking the far corner out from an acute angle leaving the opposition goalkeeper stranded.

Again Portsmouth pulled one back, but at this key time in the match Basingstoke managed to hold firm as the home side tried to find a way back in to the game.

The team protected their goal well, but were also helped at times by some outstanding individual defending, most notably Olivia Taylor-Firth somehow preventing an almost certain goal with a last ditch tackle.

As the fourth quarter rolled around Basingstoke knew the game was there for the taking, and just needed to keep control to see out the win.

They conceded early on, but then solid defence led by Kim Gray the girls were content to keep Portsmouth at arms length and protect their lead.

As this minutes passed Basingstoke were still proving to be a handful in attack, but the goals were few and far between.

Fortunately, it was at this point Fleuve Williams took it upon herself to change that, and in a blistering few minutes she slotted home her first goal, broke up a Portsmouth counter and then combined well with fellow youngster Wiles to carve through the home side’s defence and was only denied a second goal by a good save from the goalkeeper.

With the benefit of more subs and fresher legs, Portsmouth began to turn to screw and attempt to finish the game the stronger side.

Despite squeezing in two goals, with Park rounding off her tally for the match in between the two.

Basingstoke had the ever reliable Hazel Cutler between the posts and she was in fine form, at one point pulling off a stunning triple save before launching a counter attack.

Basingstoke scorers were Park (7), Fletcher (3) and one each for Hannah Wiles, Fleuve Williams and Kim Gray .

Coach Mikey Sheath said: "I thought we played excellently tonight and managed the game extremely well. This is a big pitch and with only one sub it was vital we managed the game well, made a quick start and gave ourselves a lead to defend and we did this pretty much spot on.

"The benefit of these girls training and playing matches together is clear, we worked so well as a team tonight and this was boosted by some excellent individual performances. "As always a massive well done to all the players, especially our young juniors who were brought into the team towards the end of last year and have really stepped up and played a vital role."