Despite playing against ten-men for all but the first 50 seconds of the game, Wood were beaten 2-1 by Tranmere Rovers.
Rather than looking at his own side, Garrard heaped praise on Micky Mellon’s team for a heroic effort at the home of English football.
In his post-match press conference, the 32-year-old boss said: “The credit goes to Tranmere, I’ve got to be honest.
“To go 89 minutes with ten men and play in the manner they did, with two banks of four, I have to give credit to Micky Mellon and his side.
“It’s a bitter pill to swallow. It’s a great achievement on our part to get this far but when you can almost touch it and you miss out, it’s quite upsetting.
“Tranmere are the biggest side in the National League and quite rightly they should be at a higher level.
“Nobody felt we had a chance at the start of the season but we finished fourth in the National League and beat Fylde and Sutton in the play-offs in a few days.
“I’m immensely proud of my players, my staff, the club and the fans. When the dust settles, we can look back and recognise we’ve done a fantastic job.”
The challenge for Wood now is to bounce back from their Wembley disappointment in time for next season.
Rather than preparing for life in the EFL for the first time, Garrard will be busy getting his squad together for another crack at National League promotion.
Many managers would take a week or so off before getting back to work but not Garrard. The boss, who took over in October 2015 with Wood 20th in the National League, is insistent that the club’s progress won’t stop.
“There has been a lot made in the media about the manner we run our club with a 400 fanbase but they were colossal and came out in their numbers,” he added.
“As a group, to experience the promotion final first hand, we’ve learnt so much. For me to be involved in a promotion final at Wembley after two-and-a-half years of management, I’ve learnt a hell of a lot and I’ll be taking a lot from it.
“It’ll spur me on. I won’t be putting the pad down and going on holiday for two weeks, I’ll be working tomorrow and preparing - I want to win it next year. If I don’t have that mentality, it’s going to be a long, hard season.”
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