Harlequins 7s captain Calum Waters admitted his side were gutted to come away empty handed from the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series Finals in Coventry.
Quins suffered an agonising afternoon with two last-minute defeats, once in their quarter-final against hosts Wasps and again in the Plate final against Cardiff.
But despite the disappointment, Waters was impressed with the way the young squad handled themselves against stern 7s opposition.
“We were gutted to concede in the last minute [against Cardiff], it was a bit like the Wasps game,” he said.
“Our two crucial games we’ve managed to let slip by us but we’ll bounce back next year and try to win it.
“It was good to get to the final but unfortunately it was the wrong final which we didn’t want to be in, but the boys gave it their all and that’s all we can ask for.
“I’m pretty disappointed for all the boys, we put a lot of hard work into this, two weeks of solid training and to not to come away with anything is pretty gutting.
“It was very tough coming up against Christian Wade and Frank Halai but the boys put in a great shift. When they have superstars like that and our oldest players are 22 and 21, credit to the boys it was outstanding to take it to the wire.”
Harlequins won every single game in the group stage at Franklin’s Gardens to qualify as pool C winners, but were in the plate competition after losing to Wasps 24-19 thanks to Tom Howe’s try on the buzzer.
They bounced back with a 45-21 victory over Newcastle, with Gabriel Ibitoye scoring a hat-trick of tries and Waters himself getting two.
And despite the disappointment of being edged out by 28-22 Cardiff Blues in the plate final, Aron Wyn Jones again snatching the victory away from Quins at the death, the skipper was proud of the team’s performance levels throughout the tournament.
“To be honest in that Wasps game I think we were the better 7s side,” he added.
“We moved the ball to space very well, giving our big guys like Jonas [Mikalcius] the opportunity to run it in.
“I think that’s our main positive, working as a team, I thought we worked really well together.
“That idea of playing as a team, coming together and taking it to the opposition, because it’s a team that has never played together before, and the fact we dug in so well as a squad and used all our players was fantastic.”
For more information results and reaction on the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Final in Coventry at the weekend – please visitwww.premiershiprugby.com