Services welcome Richards and Busfield to the Rectory as they prepare for new season

SOUTH West One side Devonport Services are upping their preparations for the 2021-22 season.

The club will begin their pre-season campaign next weekend when they travel to South West Premier outfit Brixham.

They are likely to hand a debut to new signing Tom Richards in that game against the Fishermen.

Richards has joined Services from Cornwall/Devon side Plymstock Albion Oaks.

Services have also announced that they have added former Tamar Saracens head coach and ex-Plymouth Albion player Stuart Busfield to their backroom staff for the forthcoming season. He will take on a management role at the club.

“Stu Busfield is going to come on board with us this season and hopefully add something different,” said head coach Mike Lewis.

“It’s another set of eyes, another voice and another opinion. He is a good man manager and, hopefully, having someone new with bring some impetus.”

Lewis is also delighted to add Richards to his squad. He is confident the former Oaks and Plymouth Argaum man can step up to level six.

“He’s been training with us and has done fantastically well,” said Lewis. “He is a great player who can add something for sure.

“We think he can link up play well. He’s very good with ball in hand, he’s quite confident and knows what he wants and how to do it.”

Richards offers impressive versatility and can play anywhere in the backline or even in the forwards.

Lewis sees him challenging for a centre spot, but welcomes having someone with such versatility.

“We think he is going to add something to our backline, but versatility is always handy,” said Lewis.

Services will open their South West One West campaign on September 4 with a home game against newcomers St Austell, who are coached by former Plymouth Albion captain Kyle Marriott and who this week officially confirmed the re-signing of Cornwall star Matt Shepherd from Albion.

Devonport will follow that up with a trip to Stroud before hosting Thornbury, who were one of their promotion rivals in the 2019-2020 campaign.

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