WHARFEDALE's head coach James Doherty has reminded members that player retention is just as important as recruitment as they bid to make a bigger footprint in National League Two North next season.

Speaking at the club dinner, Doherty, who has already promised some signings before the start of the 2017-18 campaign, said: "We work very hard behind the scenes, and retention is just as important as recruitment, and we already have 25 to 26 players from this season on board.

"Also the colts, under John Stockton, who has done a top job, have won their Yorkshire Cup for two years in a row and we can't wait to see these boys getting their chance in senior rugby."

Doherty added: "The club have played 93 games of senior rugby this season, which is pretty amazing to say that we are outnumbered four to one by sheep!

"Those 93 games do not happen by chance, and it is down to all of our volunteers.

"Sixteen players made their first-team debuts, which is a ridiculous figure, and 46 in all played for the first XV, and there was an increase of 123 in the crowds, which are down to our derbies, and we finally got that win away (last game of the season at Preston Grasshoppers).

"Josh Burridge got 13 tries in 29 appearances, Richard Rhodes and Phil Woodhead became the 27th and 28th players to join the 100 club (of league appearances) and Jamie Guy also has his eye on 100 and is hoping to follow them next season as, although he has moved to the north-east, he has handed in his registration form this evening.

"James Tyson will also be back next season (after injury).

"Tom Barrett became the fourth highest points scorer for Wharfedale in league rugby and kicked nine drop goals this season, which is more than his number of completed tackles!

"Dan Stockdale is travelling reserve for Yorkshire, which is a travesty as he kept Jordon Poole out on merit (at Wharfedale), while Ian Larkin sacrificed a whole season by playing at prop to help us out.

"He proved a very good loose-head, but I can assure him he that will be playing hooker next season."