Gutted Dalziel Rugby Club player/head coach Graham Calder thinks bad breaks cost his side in Saturday’s West Regional Shield final loss, writes Craig Goldthorp.
The Motherwell side – superbly backed by a travelling army of 100 fans – were defeated 23-12 by Greenock at Scotstoun Stadium in a game where luck largely deserted them.
Calder said: “An early game changer came at 0-0 when our winger Pierre Casassus was adjudged to have knocked the ball on after I’d kicked over the top.
“That decision was a 50/50 call by the referee that was very unlucky to go against us.
“Pierre would certainly have scored a try there, and if that’s given it would have been a real advantage for us as the game progressed.
“It was hugely frustrating missing out there, as was an incident at 13-12 down when Andrew Glover kicked the ball forward and unfortunately it bounced out of the park with the line beckoning for our players.
“There was another time when the ball bounced away from our covering players and allowed Greenock to score.
“I’m absolutely gutted to have lost, but first and foremost I’m unbelievably proud of the performance the boys put in.
“They went toe to toe with Greenock and their performance was exceptional.
“On another day we could have won.
“The support from our fans was fantastic, I can’t thank them enough.
Graham said that the most gut wrencing part of the loss is missing out on the potential chance to play at Murrayfield.
Had Dalziel won on Saturday, they would have entered a National Shield semi-final play-off next March with a view to playing a final at the home of Scottish rugby the following month.
“The biggest disappointment is missing out on a shot at Murrayfield,” he said. “I played there for Currie in a 2006 BT Cup final defeat to Watsonians and I would have loved to go back.
“As would three of the current Dalziel players, survivors from the club’s 2008 Scottish Bowl final defeat there.”