Sky’s the limit for Portobello after BT Bowl success

Portobello celebrate their Bowl success at BT Murrayfield
Portobello celebrate their Bowl success at BT Murrayfield
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Triumphant Portobello skipper Chris Britee-Steer is hoping his side’s impressive 33-23 victory over Blairgowrie in the BT Bowl final at the national stadium is just the start of things to come for the Cavalry Park outfit.

With promotion to East Division One already secured, Britee-Steer and his team-mates underlined the club’s pool of emerging talent with some slick rugby that was worthy of the occasion as Portobello lifted the silverware in the first of four finals contested on the international pitch.

And now Britee-Steer, who has headed up a side that has operated without a head coach this season, is keen to see an experienced individual finally take up the role to ease both his own and the more senior players’ responsibility.

“We are hoping that we can attract a coach through our achievements, someone with a bit of experience”, said Britee-Steer.

“Our ambition is to go as high as possible. You give up your time on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays to play for fun but, at the same time, you want to be as competitive as possible so the higher Porty can go the better for me.”

Saturday’s performance underlined both the burgeoning talent in the squad and the dedication of the trio who have taken the helm. While that may not have been an ideal set up, the captain believes that it does have some advantages.

“It can be tricky at times to decide when people are going to change and who they are going to change for.

“I have to try and relay as much information off the pitch as possible.

“But In general, it is quite easy because we make the decisions there and then.

“Any down time we have, we try to talk about what’s working and what’s not working, how we change things and how we can exploit any weaknesses.”

Backed by a noisy crowd that also featured a big contingent from Blairgowrie – the day’s cumulative attendance was 6438 and a large chunk of that number were there for this contest.

Portobello started strongly and opened the scoring in the ninth minute when winger Ali Bain raced in for the opening try, with the captain converting.

Portobello were never behind and reached the interval with a 17-8 lead after Bain had dotted down for a second time and Donald Burn powered over shortly before the break.

A try for Blairgowrie early in the second half cut the deficit to two points before Portobello regained control and Graham Culbertson bagged try number four then Britee-Steer banged over a penalty. Bain was on hand to finish off an incisive attack by Robbie Stewart and complete a hat-trick that takes his try haul for the season to 33.

Britee-Steer added a further penalty to clinch the silverware before Blairgowrie had the final say with another try.

“We started fairly strong then they came right back at us,” admitted Britee-Steer. “We stuck to our game plan a lot better in the first half and we lost it a little at the start of the second half.

“They came out firing after half time, which gave us a bit of a shock.”