League leaders should be up for the cup, believes boss

March Town 'A' reject Cambs League cup

March Town's 'A' team declined the chance to take part in the Cambridgeshire County League's 'Champions League' styled cup competition, which kicks off on April 10. Manager Kieran Daplyn said this was a decision he now regrets. - Credit: Imogen Goult

A local football manager denied a shot at promotion for a second year in a row said he regrets not taking the chance to progress even further. 

March Town’s ‘A’ team were top of Division 2B in the Cambridgeshire County League before the season was cut short due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. 

Kieran Daplyn’s men then declined the chance to take part in the league’s alternative ‘Champions League’ styled cup competition, which he admits may have been a rushed decision. 

“I thought it was a cup to soften the blow of not completing the season, so we decided not to enter,” Daplyn said. 

“It was a decision we made more in disappointment of not completing the league as I feel that should have been the priority, not a cup competition.” 

There will be a senior, intermediate and junior cup to play for, with the tournaments kicking off on April 10. 

March Town ‘A’ sat three points clear at the summit after nine games before the season was declared null and void, a season that Daplyn fancied his chances. 

“I strongly believed that we were the team to beat and I really fancied us for promotion this year,” he said. 

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“Scoring goals wasn’t a problem this year and defensively, we were pretty solid.  

“As soon as the cup competition came about, we didn’t realise it was going to competitive.” 

March also boasted the best goal difference in the division under Daplyn, who just finished his second full season at the helm. 

The team had also lost just once all season, a 3-0 defeat to Soham United last October, and triumphed in the Bill Salisbury Cup against Chatteris Town. 

But Daplyn feels their success on the pitch has not counted for anything, as his team look ahead to the summer. 

“We have a talented group and the commitment was exceptional. Training saw a massive improvement and this season, we had good numbers every week,” he added. 

“We’ve shown great character and the players are pivotal. It’s progress that matters.   

“Thinking about it now, we should have entered and played the extra games available to look to progress. 

“It’s all ‘what ifs’, so we’ll have an extra break and look to go again in June.”