Gloucester boss says his young team are destined for a long and glittering spell at the top…

Ryan was elated after watching Gloucester beat London Irish 36-34 after an exhilarating match that could have gone either way even up until the final minute of extra time.

But it was James Forrester’s 91st minute try that gave Gloucester the crucial advantage going into the final spell of the match, and they held on to claim a remarkable victory.

“This group of players in going to be around for a long time and playing in big games in the future,” said Ryan.

“In the first half we showed great maturity but we also did some silly things later on. It is important to come to finals and win, and we really dug deep to get the result today.

“Today was a great lesson and we will remember it when we get in similar positions in the future.”

Try scorer Forrester says he can remember very little about his score.

“It’s all a bit of a blur, it might have looked a bit clumsy before the ball reached the dead-ball line. We have worked hard all year and you could see how much this final meant to us, we lifted ourselves up in extra time and just came through,” he said.

London Irish coach Brian Smith was understandably devastated at the final whistle.

“It was heartbreaking for the players, they gave everything and at the end it could have gone either way.

“This will make us angry next season when we will be a bigger handful, out desire and passion will be even greater because of this.

“It was a gutsy performance and the boys had to dig really deep, I’m immensely proud of their efforts.”