Rugby: Pountney focusing on the future as Lions suffer 11th consecutive defeat

Bournemouth Echo: LIONS BOSS: Budge Pountney LIONS BOSS: Budge Pountney

BUDGE Pountney defended the decision to focus on the future yesterday after missing Bournemouth’s last-ditch 33-29 defeat at relegation rivals Dings Crusaders.

Head coach Paul Dunne was tasked with directing operations from the touchline while Pountney was on a scouting mission, taking in Wimborne’s home match with Frome in Southern Counties South.

Trailing 26-7 at half-time, Lions nearly pulled off a remarkable recovery in Bristol after four tries inside half an hour handed them a 29-26 lead at Landseer Avenue.

However, Scott Chislett was sin-binned with six minutes to play and Bournemouth failed to hold on with Joshua Lloyd scoring a match-winning try for Dings in the dying embers.

It was another bitter blow for the beleaguered Chapel Gate outfit as the defeat left them 10 points from safety in National Two South on the back of 11 consecutive league defeats.

But former Scotland captain Pountney, who took over the hotseat from David Dunn during the summer, claimed Lions were still a side in transition and insisted the tide would eventually turn.

Explaining his absence, Pountney told the Daily Echo: “It is very important for us to start planning for next year and to do that we need to get out there and have a look at all the local teams.

“We (the region’s rugby clubs) have to work with rather than against each other to try to get the top players together, playing the highest standard possible. There is a lot of talent out there and it would be great to get them all into one team.

“It is easy, particularly when things are not going well, to only focus on what is in front of you and when you fall into that trap, it is easy to fall behind. I have every confidence in my coaching staff and that is how we run things.”

Reacting to Lions’ latest setback, Pountney added: “Nobody likes to lose but that is the position we are in at the moment.

“It is difficult to take because they are not bad players, they are just struggling to get over the line at the moment. The important thing is that we keep developing and things will change – the thing with sport is that you never know when it will happen.

“People will criticise because everyone looks for immediate success but you can’t change everything at once and, sometimes, you have to take a couple of steps back when you are changing systems and processes.

“Things can falter a little to begin with but every team has to go through it. You can’t just carry on along the same lines all the time or it begins to tire.”

Lions: Westcott, Higgins (Metters, 59), K Lynch, Chislett, Stewart, Drake, Hardcastle, Spikings (Terry, 52), Wilford, Manning, Scott, Fuller, Bovett (R Lynch, 45), Vaughan-Edwards, Rees. Unused subs: Grace, Sutherland.

Comments (7)

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9:10am Mon 13 Jan 14

Mark Bennett says...

Yes, it would be good to have a higher standard of rugby in Wessex but as Budge Pountney has probably found out there is a lot of pride and tradition in the clubs local to Bournemouth. Much of it is based on families who have played for their clubs for two or three generations. It would be a shame to weaken these clubs so that we would end up with one large club of uncertain potential and several much weaker clubs playing in just the Dorset and Wilts leagues whereas Southern Counties and above give the games and competition clubs like Wimborne, Swanage & Wareham and Dorchester need.

Mark Bennett, Brittany -ex Chair and President Swanage and Wareham.
Yes, it would be good to have a higher standard of rugby in Wessex but as Budge Pountney has probably found out there is a lot of pride and tradition in the clubs local to Bournemouth. Much of it is based on families who have played for their clubs for two or three generations. It would be a shame to weaken these clubs so that we would end up with one large club of uncertain potential and several much weaker clubs playing in just the Dorset and Wilts leagues whereas Southern Counties and above give the games and competition clubs like Wimborne, Swanage & Wareham and Dorchester need. Mark Bennett, Brittany -ex Chair and President Swanage and Wareham. Mark Bennett

2:50pm Mon 13 Jan 14

Wackerone says...

It really is about time that Bournemouth realised that they are playing at least one level higher than their true ability and with the present setup will not achieve any further step ups on the ladder. Also, from what I have seen on my travels around the local scene, there wouldn't appear to be too many players who have the ability to even play at Bournemouths current level. Both Wimborne and Swanage and Wareham are not the force that they used to be and by Wimbornes own admission, find it difficult to get quality youngsters coming through now as they are more interested in computer games etc.. The reality is that you cannot run as an amateur club at a near professional level.
It really is about time that Bournemouth realised that they are playing at least one level higher than their true ability and with the present setup will not achieve any further step ups on the ladder. Also, from what I have seen on my travels around the local scene, there wouldn't appear to be too many players who have the ability to even play at Bournemouths current level. Both Wimborne and Swanage and Wareham are not the force that they used to be and by Wimbornes own admission, find it difficult to get quality youngsters coming through now as they are more interested in computer games etc.. The reality is that you cannot run as an amateur club at a near professional level. Wackerone

6:52pm Mon 13 Jan 14

Mark Bennett says...

Yes Wackerone, you are right. Pountney is only going to find the players he needs by looking further afield and will need a sackful of cash. I hope I am wrong and that in say five year's time Wessex has at least a Championship club.

Since living in France I have become a supporter of Vannes who play in Federal 1 and have ambition to be in Pro Division 2.

Brittany, like the Bournemouth area is not a strong rugby region and they, Vannes, are going to struggle to find players in the face of the super rich clubs in France.

I don't want to be a Jonah but on a local level the effort should be directed towards dragging the future players away from their computer screens so that they can discover the benefits of involvement in the great game that we all love.
Yes Wackerone, you are right. Pountney is only going to find the players he needs by looking further afield and will need a sackful of cash. I hope I am wrong and that in say five year's time Wessex has at least a Championship club. Since living in France I have become a supporter of Vannes who play in Federal 1 and have ambition to be in Pro Division 2. Brittany, like the Bournemouth area is not a strong rugby region and they, Vannes, are going to struggle to find players in the face of the super rich clubs in France. I don't want to be a Jonah but on a local level the effort should be directed towards dragging the future players away from their computer screens so that they can discover the benefits of involvement in the great game that we all love. Mark Bennett

7:16pm Mon 13 Jan 14

Wackerone says...

Totally agree with all of that Mark. What I find extremely sad today is the dearth of local teams and players. Many moons ago in the 60's and 70's there were several local clubs of varying standards including Poole, Bournemouth, Swanage, Wimborne, Old Oaks, Old Portcastrians with most of them putting out 4 and sometimes 5 XV's but above all, they all had extremely good quality colts XV's that included a few players that could step up on occasions to first XV rugby. How sad also, that Poole with its large population no longer has a team of any quality. I hope that your enjoyment of the great game in your new home of Brittany continues and that your local club achieve their ambitions.
Totally agree with all of that Mark. What I find extremely sad today is the dearth of local teams and players. Many moons ago in the 60's and 70's there were several local clubs of varying standards including Poole, Bournemouth, Swanage, Wimborne, Old Oaks, Old Portcastrians with most of them putting out 4 and sometimes 5 XV's but above all, they all had extremely good quality colts XV's that included a few players that could step up on occasions to first XV rugby. How sad also, that Poole with its large population no longer has a team of any quality. I hope that your enjoyment of the great game in your new home of Brittany continues and that your local club achieve their ambitions. Wackerone

8:35am Tue 14 Jan 14

Mark Bennett says...

Thanks Wackerone (whoever you are) we must be just two of many old stagers (**** ?) who feel like this.

It is important to realise that the structure of the game has changed enormously since the days of Old Oaks, Old Portcastrians and even Poole in theur heyday. The stiuation with rugby in schools has not helped but there has been and will continue to be an explosion in mini rugby which should be feeding the Colts teams but doesn't seem to be because of natural wastage, Also may more would be players are going away to university so don't get into senior club rugby unless their unis. are relatively near the club and the club values them enough to help with travel costs.

I have never been a Bournemouth supporter but I know quite a few of their committee including Dennis Eveleigh their Chairman, who must have quite a few concerns at the moment, I wish them well but fear that they are over ambitious
Thanks Wackerone (whoever you are) we must be just two of many old stagers (**** ?) who feel like this. It is important to realise that the structure of the game has changed enormously since the days of Old Oaks, Old Portcastrians and even Poole in theur heyday. The stiuation with rugby in schools has not helped but there has been and will continue to be an explosion in mini rugby which should be feeding the Colts teams but doesn't seem to be because of natural wastage, Also may more would be players are going away to university so don't get into senior club rugby unless their unis. are relatively near the club and the club values them enough to help with travel costs. I have never been a Bournemouth supporter but I know quite a few of their committee including Dennis Eveleigh their Chairman, who must have quite a few concerns at the moment, I wish them well but fear that they are over ambitious Mark Bennett

8:54pm Thu 16 Jan 14

BigAlfromsunnyBournemouth says...

The problem is that Bournemouth currently are a bit too good for Division 3 South West and not quite good enough for Division 2 South, unless we can pull in the best of Dorset's players we just don't have enough strength in depth for Division 2 South rugby, We really need some sort of dual player registration but that doesn't exist at the moment.
The problem is that Bournemouth currently are a bit too good for Division 3 South West and not quite good enough for Division 2 South, unless we can pull in the best of Dorset's players we just don't have enough strength in depth for Division 2 South rugby, We really need some sort of dual player registration but that doesn't exist at the moment. BigAlfromsunnyBournemouth

1:49pm Fri 17 Jan 14

Catwhiskers says...

BigAlfromsunnyBourne
mouth
wrote:
The problem is that Bournemouth currently are a bit too good for Division 3 South West and not quite good enough for Division 2 South, unless we can pull in the best of Dorset's players we just don't have enough strength in depth for Division 2 South rugby, We really need some sort of dual player registration but that doesn't exist at the moment.
Who cares?
[quote][p][bold]BigAlfromsunnyBourne mouth[/bold] wrote: The problem is that Bournemouth currently are a bit too good for Division 3 South West and not quite good enough for Division 2 South, unless we can pull in the best of Dorset's players we just don't have enough strength in depth for Division 2 South rugby, We really need some sort of dual player registration but that doesn't exist at the moment.[/p][/quote]Who cares? Catwhiskers

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