Dudley debut hands Portsmouth boost

Anthony Fooks
Anthony Fooks
Dylan Raubenheimer. Picture: Ian Hargreaves

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Portsmouth coach Ben Dudley has named himself at outside-half for the London two south west visit to Cobham.

The 35-year-old only recently retired from playing after spending 13 years with National League outfit Worthing.

He missed out in Portsmouth’s two opening games because of injury but has recovered to lend his experience to their bid for a first win.

Dudley knows his young side face another difficult challenge against their unbeaten hosts.

‘This is another tough test but one we are looking forward to,’ said Dudley.

‘Although we have lost both our games so far, there have been a lot of positives.

‘In the first half, in particular, against Winchester we played some good stuff.

‘We were also good defensively in the closing stages of the first half when we came under pressure.

‘I am looking for another good performance to try to come back with something.

‘If possible, even, give ourselves a chance to win.’

In the forwards, Anthony Fooks comes in at number seven for Daz Leggott, who is away with the army.

Ryan Wilkie starts at tight-head prop, Damien Gibbs moves into the second row, with Luke Richardson switching to number eight.

United Services will look 
to continue their perfect 
start to life in London three south west at Battersea Ironsides.

Services have won their opening two games, leaving director of rugby Matt Davis delighted.

‘Our first two games have been highly encouraging,’ said Davis.

‘We know it won’t be like that every week and there are tougher tests ahead.

‘Our aim is to continue to try to get as many points on the board we can as soon as we can.

‘So far I couldn’t have wished for any more.’

Services are boosted by 
the return of experienced scrum-half Ben Smith who was ever-present last season.

Steve Gee is also back on the wing and Sam Porter is back at number eight following a week off.

In Hampshire two, Southsea Nomads start their away campaign at bottom-of-the-league Aldershot & Fleet.