Llanelli's Head of Rugby Anthony Buchanan was proud with his sides performance in defeat to Neath in Saturday's SWALEC Cup Final.<b>
The Parc y Scarlets club fell to a 27-21 defeat at the Millennium Stadium, ending the season as both losing cup finalists and league nearly men, finishing fourth in the table after topping the table at one point.
But Buchanan refuses to accept talk of it being a disappointing season, instead insisting that things can only get better for his young charges. He said: "I wouldn't say it's been a season of near misses, rather one showing us all the start of things to come.
"I wanted to challenge at the top end of Welsh rugby this year, and I feel we are getting pretty close to doing that."
The Llanelli boss conceded errors made by his side ultimately cost them the match.
"We played a huge amount of attacking rugby early on and didn't take advantage of what we created," said Buchanan. "But that is cup rugby, we have to learn from our mistakes but to be fair we are a pretty honest side and being so young we are bound to make mistakes from time to time.
"Neath are a good side and should be congratulated on their win, but we contributed a large amount to what was a very exciting game.
"I feel we can hold our heads high and say we contributed to a cracking game of rugby."
Now, all eyes are on whether Buchanan's youngsters can grow up into a trophy winning side next year. "It would have been nice to win the Swalec Cup today, but it wasn't to be and now next season cannot come quick enough," he added.
"We want to be competitive next year, and although we must not get ahead of ourselves I want us to be up there with the best of them.
"It is all about taking things forward and channelling ourselves. We have a group of younger players who I know will be coming on even stronger next season."
As the countdown continues for RWC2015, Tournament Chief Executive Debbie Jevans visited the Millennium Stadium to discuss preparations for the eight matches and reveal the positive news that 100,000 tickets for games at the home of Welsh rugby have sold in the last seven days.
Jason Harries is targeting a first win on the World Series circuit this season with Wales. The series returns to action this weekend in Dubai where Harries is part of a team hoping to build from its efforts in round one in October.
Wales skipper Jevon Groves says his side have addressed a few points from Gold Coast and aim to 'hit the ground running' in the next two rounds of the World Series, kicking off with this weekend in Dubai before heading off to South Africa next week.
Wales Sevens manager Steff Thomas is hopeful his side can build from a quarter-final spot in the opening round of the World Series in Australia when his side take part in the forthcoming double header in Dubai and South Africa.