The sun was beating down on Bristol City’s impressive training base for a marathon encounter with Pompey.
With an agreement to play an additional period of 30 minutes on top of the regulation 90, it meant Danny Cowley could get an hour into two sets of players.
And the extended – and entertaining – contest against Championship opposition finished all square at 3-3.
The result was ultimately not too important for Cowley, though, who was pleased to see his troops continue to build for the start of League One action.
The Blues boss said: “We played 120 minutes in the heat and it was another step in the right direction, with good progression from the game we played at St George’s Park.
“They all did some strength and fitness work after the final whistle as well, so it’s been a useful day for us.
“We went 2-0 up at half-time and a lot of our work against the ball was positive. We pressed really well.
"We played 120 minutes in the heat and it was another step in the right direction."
“As a consequence of that we were able to enjoy a control of the game and provided a real goal threat.
“There were a lot of new partnerships after we made our changes and perhaps we lost our way a little bit.
“We saw a lot of good performances right through the team and the main thing for us was the physical return against another top Championship team.
“We’re moving in the right direction, although there’s still a lot of work for us to do in terms of recruitment.”
Pompey equalised in the final period of the game, although it was Robins youngster Marlee Francois scored for them.
Cowley explained: “He did really well for us! Browny had picked up an injury and didn’t want to play anyone beyond 60 minutes at this stage.
“So we were one guy short and were thankfully able to us one of Bristol City’s players, who did just fine.”