JACOB Ford will be staying with Westcliff Rugby for a second season.

Ford guided Westcliff to safety in the club’s first ever campaign in National Two South last term.

And Ford - who has now extended his role to director of rugby at the Gables - is keen to ensure the club keep progressing.

“Next season is a fantastic opportunity to further show what we can achieve as a team,” said Ford, the youngest level three coach in the country.

“I’m excited to start the process again with this group.

“I’ve made a lot of friends down here and I can see myself being here for a little while longer at least.

“I think there’s a lot of opportunities and I think we’ve all learnt a lot from the first season.”

Westcliff sat 13 points above the relegation zone when the season was stopped in mid March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

And Ford was pleased with how his side improved the longer the season went on.

“We showed clear signs all progression throughout the season,” said Ford, whose brother George is an England international.

“We didn’t get much of a pre-season which puts you on the back foot a little bit and we missed out on a few results very narrowly.

“But after Christmas things started to go our way and we had some impressive results.

“If the season had carried on I would like to think we would have got even more good results but we learnt a lot and it’s put us in good stead for next year too. It was a great first season in terms of who we’re working with and understanding the environment.”

But Ford is still eager to improve in all areas.

“We want an environment which people want to be part of,” said Ford.

“That’s arguably moreimp ortant than the technical part of it and what you coach.

“Getting the culture and values right is crucial and we want to develop something that will last longer than just our time here.”

Westcliff will now wait to find out when next season will be able to kick off.

And Ford is looking forward to facing local rivals Rochford Hundred who will also be in National Two South next term.

“Somebody has mentioned to me we are closest two teams in all of the National Leagues,” said Ford.

“There will be great anticipation for everyone involved and hopefully they will be good games.”