Helensburgh Rugby Club’s head coach David Calderwood insists his side are more than capable of a top half finish this year - if they have their full squad available.

The Grizzlies head to East Kilbride on Saturday for their opening fixture in BT West Division One, but question marks remain over the EK squad this season.

The Lanarkshire club is currently on the lookout for a head coach, and had to forfeit their game against Allan Glen’s two weeks ago because of a lack of front-row players.

But Calderwood said the early signs are good for his side as they head through to Torrance House on Saturday.

He said: “If we could put our strongest team, or near enough our strongest team, out most weeks I don’t see why we can’t finish in the top half of the league.

“But we need to get that consistency, that commitment from the guys. It’s looking good for Saturday anyway.

“We’ve got a stronger team this week. Considering where [East Kilbride] finished last year, we’ll need to just wait and see what happens."

The Grizzlies have had mixed fortunes in recent weeks, beating Division Two side Cumbernauld last week in the preliminary round of the BT West Regional Shield, before losing to Garnock in the first round on Saturday.

But despite losing 25-0, Saturday's tie was a vast improvement on last year’s trip through to Ayrshire, when Helensburgh lost 60-7.

There was positives to take for the Ardencaple boss against a side he tipped for an improved finish from last year under the guidance of former Burgh coach Bill MacDonald.

He said: “They [Garnock] were quite well prepared for us, and probably a better Garnock team than they were when they finished last year, fourth in the league.

“We got beat by them by over 50 points last year through there, so 25-0 is an improvement. It was only 5-0 in the second half so we are all still heading in the right direction.

“We just need to stick to the stuff we’ve been doing at training.

“We finished the game quite strongly, we never went over the try line but I think the guys realise that we need to play the way we want to try and play for longer rather than letting other teams dictate what we’re doing.”

Kick-off against East Kilbride is at 3pm on Saturday. Burgh’s first game at Ardencaple is against Stewartry on Saturday, September 9.