DIRECTOR of rugby David Irish believes the spark has returned to Spring Lane after Malvern finished the season with a 74-12 thrashing of Old Leamingtonians on Saturday.
The hosts simply tore their Warwickshire opponents apart as they racked up 12 tries, including a Connor Giggle hat-trick.
The bumper home victory rounded off a strong Midlands Two West (South) campaign for Malvern, who finished fourth in the table, with 15 wins to their name.
And Irish said he was delighted with how well this season had gone, especially after suffering back-to-back relegations.
“After the trials and tribulations of the two previous seasons it shows that the Malvern spirit remains undiminished,” he said.
“We have a happy dressing room, a superb coach in Billy McGinty who brings so much to training sessions and a core of local lads who have regenerated the spark which two poor seasons had dimmed.
“We set out to finish in the top six and have ended up fourth as we rebuild for the future.
“I’m sure that next year we can perform even better and seeing some excellent youngsters coming through from our youth section I feel that the future of Malvern is looking bright.”
Old Leamingtonians had already been condemned to relegation but they still played their part in an entertaining game, never giving up and on occasion testing Malvern’s defence.
However, it was the home side who dictated the pace and soon went ahead with a pushover try from lock Dave Smith. Malvern’s pack was featuring heavily in the early stages as they laid the platform for skipper Luke Milton to go over.
The scoreboard continued to be a busy place as Malvern won a penalty, opted for a five-metre scrum and George Roberts was on hand to scythe his way through the middle of the defence to score a fine try. Ben King added the extras.
Malvern did lose their way for a period as OLs hit back with a try of their own, but they soon woke up and stretched their lead with a try from Giggle who collected Richard Fleming’s long pass to touch down and secure the bonus point.
This was then followed by their fifth try of the half as James Southall took a quick tap and go before offloading to Rory Jones who eased over. King converted it to open up a 29-5 lead at half time.
Malvern could have eased off after the interval, but instead they continued where they left off as Southall spotted a gap and nipped through to score.
King landed the conversion before going over the whitewash himself as Malvern put further breathing space between themselves and the visitors.
The home side then brought up the half century thanks to tries from Giggle and Roberts. Giggle turned provider for Southall’s second try before Adam Green struck.
OLs scored a late try, but it was Malvern who had the final word as Giggle crossed before King completed the rout with a conversion.