CHERRIES women boss Steve Cuss hailed the development squad for an “outstanding season” as they hope to complete a double this weekend.

After securing the FA Women’s National League South West reserves league last month, the women’s development team will contest the FAWNL reserve cup final on Saturday against Oxford United.

David Graham’s side travel to FC United of Manchester’s Broadhurst Park, with kick-off against Oxford United at 4pm.

Asked about the development team’s season, Cuss told the Daily Echo: “An outstanding season.

“We're really, really pleased with the development team, predominantly made up of girls under the age of 18.

“It's providing the perfect platform for them to come out of our youth program into senior football for the first time, play against adults, and playing in an environment where you're expected to try and win, but also add to your development as well.

“And they've enjoyed an exceptional season. Really pleased for them to see them take the league title.

“That shows how consistent they are and how well they've been playing week in, week out.

“And then they've enjoyed this incredible cup run as well, where we got drawn against a tough one in a semi-final with Wolves away, and we go and win that one.

“We're now looking forward to the final against Oxford.

“So congratulations to David Graham and the whole team there for a good season.

“And importantly from that as well, there are girls there that are pushing for places in the first team. “We saw Elin Starck and Caitlin Elliott play last time we played here at the Vitality Stadium and they enjoyed fantastic seasons personally within the development team.

“So a good year all round for them.”

Asked what involvement he has with the younger age groups, Cuss explained: “I have close involvement from the under-10s upwards.

“I'm often at their matches. I'll be at the junior matches (on Saturday mornings) watching the under-12s and the under-14s.

“I know what players that we've got coming through and I know the structure of everything, and obviously I play a part in that as well.

“But as it gets older, and particularly the development team, I work very closely with David, the head coach of the development team to identify players that are progressing well and potentially could come into our training environment as a first step or come into the first team and get some matches.

“I’m always busy watching all the teams.”