Heartache as Cambus let slip chance of title
Captain Jones says loss feels worse than relegation
Cambuslang coach Jamie Seery believes the league title was really lost in key matches throughout the campaign rather than in Saturday’s defeat to Stewartry.
The Coats Park side failed to win just three out of 15 games this season but two came at a price after two losses to title-snatchers Stewartry.
Seery said:“If you look at stages in the season you can see what has faltered us. We shouldn’t have lost at Stewartry and not gone to Clydebank and lost. We gave ourselves too much of a mountain to climb even though we pulled points back.
“And we should have won on Saturday. Out of the two teams we were the better.
“But at the start of the year, we were struggling for numbers and weren’t sure if we would get a team together so to get within one game from winning the league was great. You need to take the positives.”
He added:“We need to say well done to Stewartry. It was a very much deserved win for them after missing out with one point last year.
“We didn’t play to the game plan but the players left everything on the park. We’ve come a long way in a short period which is what we will move forward with.
“We feel we are building something here and this is just the start of the journey.”
Greenock RFC are the likely team from the West region to be relegated from the National
Cambuslang Rugby Club captain Gregor Jones says Saturday’s loss in their league decider felt worse than being relegated last season.
The Coats Park skipper, who has played with the first team for 10 years, revealed how gutted the team were to miss out on winning the league and promotion with one game left to play.
The Cambus’ 23-17 defeat to rivals Stewartry was their first loss at home this season and their third overall in the BT West Division 2.
But Jones told the Reformer the feeling of being demoted from the division above last season was not nearly as bad as the weekend’s heartache.
“They were obviously two different situations but Saturday probably felt worse than when we got relegated”, the 26-year-old said.
“We were playing in a higher league so it wasn’t so much of a surprise when we finally went down.
“Saturday felt worse because we all believed promotion was possible.
“We were well aware that Stewartry were a very good side and it’s been pretty much us and them for the whole season at the top of the league.”
Commenting on the match itself, he added: “In the first half we played well and stuck to our game plan and scored a couple of tries.
“They didn’t stick to their plan as Division 3, so only the league winner is guaranteed promotion from the BT West Division 2.
Cambuslang will play away to Millbrae on Saturday and must gain maximum points in the hope Stewartry, who are one point ahead, drop points to bottom of the pile Cumbernauld on February 18. much as they’d probably have liked and made a couple of mistakes which we managed to capitalise on.
“But, credit to them, they came out in the second half firing and took the game to us. We didn’t handle the pressure as well as we should have done. We didn’t stick to what we had been working on and instead we ran around like headless chickens and didn’t stick to our game plan.”
Jones, who lives in East Kilbride, has been involved with Cambuslang RFC since he was eight years old and has been part of turbulent seasons in the past.
But this campaign proved to be an enthralling experience which he never would have believed possible without the hiring of coach Jamie Seery.
He said: “Promotion and winning the league wasn’t the aim at the start but as the season went on it became the goal.
“At the tail end of last season we didn’t have a coach and not a lot of players.
“We probably could have scraped a 15 together to put out on the park but that would have been it.
“Then Jamie came in and brought in some new faces. A lot of them couldn’t play in the first few games so they didn’t have a lot of time to gel.
“Another positive is that all the team is going to stay together and I believe we have the squad to push for promotion and the title next season.
“We’ll have a full pre-season this time around to gel and I think we are more than capable of mounting a challenge.”
Saturday’s defeat probably felt worse than when we got relegated last season
No way through A Cambuslang man is met by a wall of Stewartry players
Captain’s word Gregor Jones skips away from his man
Scrap Harland is held by a swarm of opposition players