STEVE Dorrington believes winning the County Championship Shield final at Twickenham is the best achievement of his rugby career.
Cheshire's 32-17 victory over Middlesex - shown live on Sky Sports - handed Dorrington his first silverware as a county coach and he is glowing with pride.
'It was magnificent!' said the former director of rugby at Chester. 'I'm still high on life at the moment as winning the Shield was exactly what we set out to achieve.'
Monday's dominant display capped off a fine season for the county's elite players, who gained promotion back to the County Championship Cup scoring an impressive total of 178 points in just four games.
But while Dorrington, of Great Sutton, can claim some credit as Cheshire's forwards coach, the former county prop believes that the reason behind this year's success lies elsewhere.
'The psychology from Steve Rule (head coach) was perfect from the start,' said the 42-year-old. 'Right from day one when we talked about why we wanted to be involved with Cheshire, the focus was on getting to Twickenham and winning.
'But really the key to our success is that we've had a gang of winners. It's been a very special group of people.
'They all had a winning attitude. That's why the squad gelled so quickly and each and every one of them wanted to win.'
While Middlesex claimed home advantage on Monday, it was the men from the wheatsheaf county who took the game by the scruff of the neck with the pack dominating up front.
Former Ireland international Simon Mason once again looked at home on the biggest stage, amassing 22 points in another near-faultless display of goalkicking.
Tries either side of half time from fullback Ross Winney and number-eight Kati Tuipulotu put the game beyond Middlesex, leaving the band of Cheshire supporters in raptures.
Being victorious at England's home of rugby is about as good as it gets for players and coaches alike and following a tense first group game in the North East, Cheshire have looked very much like the champions they are.
'We started very nervously at Durham,' said Dorrington. 'But since then we have just got better and better and better.
'I couldn't fault any single player whatsoever. It was a fantastic performance.'
While Dorrington is looking forward to a new challenge as head coach at New Brighton, he is already anticipating the next county season.
'I can't wait!' he said. 'To be involved with such a special group of players is fantastic. You make friends for life in this game and this year has been no different.'