POOLE Town boss Tom Killick has pledged to curb his competitive instinct when it comes to team selection for tonight's friendly against Portsmouth at the Black Gold Stadium.

Dolphins will begin their warm-up schedule with an intriguing clash against the League Two champions (7.30pm), with Killick mindful his players are getting their fitness up to speed.

And the manager has promised his squad members will not be overworked at an early stage of pre-season.

Killick told the Daily Echo: "The thing I find with friendlies is the competitive instinct in you wants to play your strongest team and give a good account of yourselves.

"But sometimes you have to temper that because at the end of the day, this is our first pre-season fixture.

"We will be playing a mixed team in both halves of experienced players and younger players, who were our under-18s last year. The young players are very talented so I have complete trust in them.

"My overriding duty is to the players and bearing in mind it's their first game, 45 minutes is all they should be doing.

"You have to allow common sense to override the competitive instinct, which is that I want to pick the strongest side and win the game."