Cochrane: Missing out on final was a huge disappointment
HOOKER Neil Cochrane admitted missing out on the Championship final was bitterly disappointing for the Blues as they came up three points short against London Welsh.
He scored a late third Bedford try at Old Deer Park on Sunday to set up a grandstand finish as the Exiles just edged them out.
Cochrane said: “It’s any rugby players’ dream to pick up some silverware whether it’s the British & Irish Cup or the Championship and ultimately we are a little bit disappointed.
“But the potential is there and we just need to regroup in pre-season work hard and if we work hard the rewards will pay off like they have done this season.
“We might have come up a little bit short but there is always next season.
“We finished on a high but we are bitterly disappointed we are not in the final.
“We just need to make sure we regroup and next season and come back stronger and make sure we make it into the final.
“Make sure we learn from this season not getting into the final and take that into next year and know what to expect in a Championship semi-final and use that next time.
“We’ve talked about it all week, it’s just going to be small margins and ultimately we’ve come up short unfortunately.
“The effort is there for everyone to see and we can take a lot of positive away from that going into next season.
“At times we just need to be a bit more ruthless and the potential of the squad is magnificent. I think it gives us great confidence going into next season.”
Welsh seemed to stop at the death, waiting for the referee to whistle for a knock-on as Cochrane nipped in to score.
He said: “At the end of the day you have to play the referee and I never heard a whistle so I continued to run.
“I was lucky, I think a few of their players stopped thinking the ref was going to call for a knock on, but some might say it was an opportunistic try.
“Like I say you have to play to the whistle.”
Bedford attacked from deep within their own half for long spells of the second period as they refrained from kicking.
Cochrane continued: “We ran them from our own half, our own sticks, for probably all of our tries in the second half.
“We probably didn’t need to kick or get field position in that sense. We upped the tempo second half and they just couldn’t live with us.
“There’s a lot of positive and everyone will be looking forward to pre-season and trying putting the right into that wrong and get to that final.”
And although they never doubted they could overturn the 10-point deficit from the first leg, it was ultimately that that cost the Blues.
He added: “I think we always believed in our ability and everyone was saying it was half time.
“The conditions didn’t suit us last week and we played a lot better today, but as you saw the intensity of the game over the two legs the intensity is right up there and at times we didn’t really turn up for the first half of the game and that’s something we spoke about in the changing room.
“We came out in the second half and ultimately put them to the sword and if we had done that first half we probably would have been in the final.”
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Monday 20 May 2013
Temperature: 11 C to 18 C
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