BASINGSTOKE RFC can put themselves well and truly in the driving seat to take the Hampshire Premier crown if they win their top of the table clash away at second placed Shanklin and Sandown on Saturday.

The home side's only loss this season was at the hands of Stoke earlier in the season.

Stoke warmed up for their trip to the Isle of Wight as they continued their perfect league season with win number 13, as they beat visiting New Milton 41-5.

The hosts came out of the blocks fast. A high tempo and constant pressure saw Simon Appleby get the first score of the day after a slick offload from back row Sam Goddard.

More of the same saw a similar try again from Appleby, before Stoke put another on the board.

The forwards set up a maul in the opposition 22 which allowed prop Guy Pope to get on the scoresheet after a powerful drive to make it 15-0 at the break.

George Hemmings got the first score of the second half, finding a gap with some quick feet in the oppositions 22. Kurtis Eagle struck the conversion before being involved again a few minutes later in Stoke's next score.

Stoke were now camped down in New Milton's half when Eagle recovered an opposition fumble to put Brad Turner under the posts, which was again converted.

Basingstoke were now into their rhythm and playing some good rugby.

Strong running from Jamie Prior got him over the line to make the score 34-0.

New Milton scored their lone try, before Appleby converted by Eagle completed the scoreline.