Dreadnoughts anticipate momentous ‘naval derby’

Dreadnoughts coaches Phil Marter and Simon O'Hara. Picture: Sarah Standing (124161-5037)
Dreadnoughts coaches Phil Marter and Simon O'Hara. Picture: Sarah Standing (124161-5037)
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Matt Audley has backed his Portsmouth Dreadnoughts team-mates to put on a show in tomorrow’s momentous clash against Plymouth Extreme.

The Dreadnoughts, who were formed in April last year by chairman and coach Simon O’Hara, will play their first home game of the United Kingdom Independent Gridiron (UKIG) League at Alexandra Park (2pm).

And linebacker Audley has called on those interested in the sport to witness the culmination of a year’s hard work.

The 26-year-old said: ‘We are currently in a three-team experimental league – the UKIG – and competing against Plymouth Extreme and London Hornets.

‘We’ve already played against London and Plymouth but both of those have been away games.

‘Tomorrow will be our first ever home game.

‘It is a great chance for people to come down and experience real American Football.

‘A lot of people watch it on the TV and think it’s advert break this, advert break that.

‘But when you are at the game it is a lot quicker and a lot more happens than you think.

‘People coming down are likely to see a few big hits.

‘A lot of our players are current or ex-rugby players, so there’s no fear involved.’

There is already much riding on a game being billed as a ‘naval derby’.

Audley said: ‘We beat Plymouth last time out.

‘And there has been a lot of banter between both teams since on Facebook and Twitter.

‘They are saying they want revenge.

‘It is being billed as the American Football naval derby – like Pompey against Plymouth Argyle.’

For the Dreadnoughts, tomorrow’s game marks an amazing progression from where a year ago.

Audley explained: ‘Since April last year, the team has gone from four players and a coach up at Horndean to now having more than 30 players down at Alexandra Park.’