The Arrowtown rugby coach is hailing his team despite losing the Central Otago premier final on Saturday.
Arrowtown lost 27-8 to defending champion Maniototo at Cromwell – only its second loss this season after Maniototo also snatched the White Horse Cup off it two weeks earlier.
Arrowtown coach Drew Carmody says: “I thought we gave it a bloody good go in the first half an hour but we didn’t take the opportunities.
“Maniototo soaked up all the pressure and then just made more of their chances.
“They knew how to win, really – we had a lot of young boys who hadn’t played finals football before.
“It’s still a successful season, it just ended up on a bad note.”
Carmody says fortunately the bulk of his team will be back next year.
“We just need to believe in ourselves a wee bit more, believe that we’re good enough to throw the ball around and score tries and not rely on forward-dominated rugby.”
Club president Simon Spark says he’s also very happy with the team, who gave it
“That’s all you can ask,” he says.
“Maniototo’s a good side – that’s the sort of rugby we want to be playing more of, because they’re the benchmark.
“We’re proud as hell – I’d rather lose a final than not be in at all.”
Meanwhile, the Wakatipu Premiers won their play-off for third against Clyde-Earnscleugh by default, though the teams did play a 30-minute social game.
The Wakatipu Wanderers also won their bottom-five play-off for third, against Upper Clutha B, by default.
Arrowtown’s Lawrence Wadham and Wakatipu’s Ben Macdonald, Steve Bruce and Matt Petre have been selected in the Otago Country premier squad.