Workington Town will learn from defeat - Gary Charlton

Gary Charlton
Charlton is keen to keep as much of his squad together as possible for next season's challenge in Championship One

Workington head coach Gary Charlton says his side can bounce back from Sunday's 32-12 Championship One Grand Final defeat by Keighley.

Town, in their first showpiece final in 17 years, were pipped to promotion by a Cougars side whom they beat in an earlier play-off round.

"They know what it feels like now to come to a final," Charlton told BBC Radio Cumbria.

"Hopefully next year we can go one better and win the league."

Under Charlton and joint-boss Martin Oglanby, the West Cumbrian outfit have risen from perennial wooden spoon contenders to promotion candidates in just two full seasons, and have seen young players such as Jarrad Stack and Jack Pedley honoured by their fellow professionals for their developments.

"We can see the light at the end of the tunnel, we're playing some good rugby, it's enjoyable to watch," Charlton continued.

"It's just disappointing we came up with a bad 20-25 minutes in the first half and that's cost us the game.

"They dominated our forwards which other teams haven't done this year. We lost a lot of steam in defending all of the time, and our kicking game was up what it has been all year and the chase was poor as well."

The next challenge for Charlton and his backroom staff is to retain the core of the squad that reached the Grand Final, although Neil Frazer and Dave Armistead have already confirmed their departures from Derwent Park.

"They're a tight knit sort of bunch, they want to do well for Workington Town," Charlton added.

"We'll try to sign on the lads from our own squad, if they don't and move onto pastures new then we'll have to bring other people in.

"We've got the basis of a really good squad here, it just needs a couple more to make us into a really good team."

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