A HAMPSHIRE rugby player was left with horrific facial injuries when his head was smashed on a kerb in an unprovoked attack.

Ben Stewart was set upon as he and his team-mates were celebrating winning their first match of the season.

He suffered a broken nose, cuts, bruising and swelling but no one has yet been arrested for the vicious assault.

Ben, 32, lives in Chandler’s Ford and plays as a winger with Bournemouth RFC. He was attacked in the town’s Old Christchurch Road.

New Zealand-born Ben, who has played for Bournemouth for four years, said: “A group of men and women walking in the other direction made a remark to us and I don’t remember anything after that. My friend remembers being pushed over and then seeing me on the pavement. There was a lot of blood and the group ran away.”

Ben was taken to Poole Hospital where he remained for 24 hours while X-rays were carried out for suspected skull and facial fractures.

Ben added: “I was very lucky that it was only my nose that was broken.”

Ben, who works in sales for Bacardi Martini, was forced to stay off work for a week and has been unable to play for Bournemouth since.

He helped the team win promotion to National League 2 South last season.

He said: “If anyone knows who did this, I would like them to contact the police.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or the anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111.