‘Underdogs’ tag suits Services as they tackle New Milton

Simon Burns. Picture: Steve Reid (121864-686)
Simon Burns. Picture: Steve Reid (121864-686)
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United Services have their sights on another unbeaten scalp as Hampshire one leaders New Milton arrive at Burnaby Road (2.30pm).

Services ended Andover’s 100-per-cent winning record recently and fancy their chances of adding the New Forest team to their conquests.

Simon Burns’ side are also looking to bounce back from their narrow defeat at high-flying Fordingbridge last week.

Burns believes the Burnaby Road factor can get them back to winning ways.

‘Playing on our home pitch has always had a positive impact on our players,’ said the head coach.

‘We will need to be at the top of our game if we are to come away with a win.

‘Our club is still in a rebuilding phase and this will be a good test.

‘Each week we seem to be faced with new challenges which is fantastic for the younger players and their development. It bodes well for the future.

‘We are expecting a stern test from a team determined to remain unbeaten.

‘Being the underdogs suits us because there is no pressure on the players.

‘Once the whistle goes my players will give everything and that is all I can ask.

‘After receiving the prestigious RFU Club Accreditation this week, a win would be the icing on the cake.’

Services give a debut to full-back James McAvoy who has impressed in the second team.

Ed Gaught and Mark Humberstone return after navy duties and experienced pair Trev McAlister and Andy Webster are also back.

UNITED SERVICES: Macavoy, Cantwell, Webster, Hoskins, Willoughby, Webster, Irvine, Lanigan, Gaught, Humberstone, Baltrkenas, McAlister, Guyll, Blackett, Smith O. Replacements: Randel, Mellor, Price.