PA Sport - Tue, 27 Apr 09:36:00 2010
Worcester captain Pat Sanderson believes the club can come back stronger following their relegation from the Guinness Premiership.
The Warriors will drop down to the Championship for the first time in six years following Sunday's 12-10 defeat against Leeds at Headingley Carnegie in what had been dubbed 'the £1 million match'.
Sanderson was forced to watch from the sidelines after failing a late fitness test on a shoulder injury, but said: "There's a lot of endeavour and heart gone into this place to get us where we are. This is a hammer blow and it's difficult to take.
"What is most important for me as an individual, for us as a team and my friends in that changing room is how we deal with this."
He added: "We will learn more from relegation than we will in any other way, it's when you are at your lowest that you find out the most about yourself.
"I have no doubt the people in that room will deal with it in the right way and we'll be back."
Sanderson and company will look to draw inspiration from the likes of Northampton and Harlequins, who both bounced back into the top-flight at the first attempt and have gone on to challenge for silverware.
"Of course that is something we can be positive about," said Sanderson. "It's difficult to look past what's just happened because it is very emotional but we have to respond in the right way, deal with it the right way and take every positive we can out of it.
"We need to reflect on our mistakes and make sure we come back better for this experience. It could be an incredibly big moment for the club in terms of moving forward."
Worcester's relegation will also increase the speculation over the future of rugby director of Mike Ruddock, with several reports over the weekend linking former Gloucester boss Dean Ryan with the top job at Sixways.
But Ruddock refused to be drawn on his future in the immediate aftermath of Sunday's shattering defeat, saying: "I will chat with the chairman and see what he thinks. We've had a major disappointment and I don't want to talk about those things."