Cup final hopefully “something to savour” after disappointing season

Date: Thursday 18th April 2019

TODAY’S Cumbria Cup final will hopefully by something to savour at the end of a difficult season, says Penrith head coach Dave Preston.

Penrith will take on Kendal, who have been relegated from North Premier, at Carlisle RFC’s Warwick Road ground. The game will kick off at 3-30, following the Cumbria League Cup final between Cockermouth and Aspatria, which starts at 1-30pm.

“The final hasn’t been mentioned much as we’ve had our league issues,” said Preston. “We had a light training session on Tuesday as a number of lads are carrying knocks. We will have some serious preparation on Thursday evening and pick the side.

“It will be a bit of a special day as cup finals don’t come around that often. For some of the players it will be their first final and for others it might be their last — you’ve just got to grasp the moment and take your opportunities.

“It’s something to savour at the end of a difficult season and, hopefully, something to look back on with pleasure.”

Meanwhile, Preston said his side’s 26-24 defeat at Stockport which was enough to retain their place in North One West for next season, was a game that summed up the season.

“We got the result we needed to stay in the league, with two bonus points. Anyone who watched could see it was a carbon copy of a number of our games this season — we should have won, but we didn’t.

“We had great vocal support down at Stockport from our under-12s who were down there on tour. They cheered the lads on and did a great job.

“It was a bit of a bittersweet afternoon, losing in the final minutes, but ultimately we got what we needed.

“We were bolstered by the return of a couple of players for the last game or two. Matt Allinson mucked us out and anyone who has been involved with him knows he’s a 110 per cent player — he really gave the squad a lift in the final two games.

“That’s the league done and dusted and to be honest it’s been a disappointing campaign. We will have a lot of work to do pre-season.”