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To Leave or to Remain?

5 months ago By Andrew Marsh

"Simmo", Turner and McCrum among the big names departing the club, but eight players from last season remain....

Staying with the club are “Captain Marvel” James Beaston, Most Improved Player award winner Aiden Kearsley, Aodhan Brownlee, brothers Niah and Sanchez Payne, Helmo Silva, Steve Weatherill and Ross Shelton.
As you can read in this excellent article, Ross is currently out injured and is hoping to return in the coming weeks. Jet-setting midfielder Jack McMurrough is understood to be away travelling in Australia.

Striker Mark Simpson returned to join Worksop Town in June. Golden Boot winner for the last two seasons with 28 goals in 2017-18 (and 30 in 2016-17), “Simmo” moved ahead of Peter Taylor last season to become the club’s all-time top scorer according to current records, with 82 in total. The most appeared player of the squad which finished last season, Mark made 35 appearances in his third spell here against a total of 140 overall (21 as substitute).

Long-serving players Lee Turner, Luke McCrum, Mitch Hamilton, Luke Kitson and Sean Hunter have also departed.

Midfielder/centre-forward Lee has opted to play West Yorkshire League football this season with Hunslet Sports. A summer 2016 signing, he started last season on fire with eight goals in five games. Garforth lad Lee picked up the Ralph Backhouse Trophy and Manager’s Player of the Season award at the First Team presentation evening back in May. Overall he's appeared 77 times in a Garforth jersey (9 as a sub), scoring 21 goals.

Central defender Luke has joined our neighbours Harrogate Railway. Luke joined us from Knaresborough in January 2016 during the Adie Costello era and played a part in the club’s Premier Division survival. Frustratingly, after making his 99th appearance in late March (with 6 goals to his name), Luke injured his ankle, forcing him to miss the final weeks of the season. Now back playing, he finally made an ‘honorary’ 100th appearance in the Annual Bannister Challenge Match played on 22nd July in which he not only picked up the trophy which had sat gathering dust on our chairman’s desk, but scored probably his best goal in a Garforth shirt (see video on our Facebook page).

Attacking midfielder Mitch departed the club for Liversedge last week. A summer 2016 signing, Mitch was a real crowd-pleaser with his surging runs through the heart of defence and had many assists to his name. Winner of the Most Improved Player award in 2016-17, he made 84 appearances for the club (9 as sub), scoring 12 goals.

Left-back Luke has also left Cedar Ridge, reportedly for Hunslet Sports. Luke made 65 appearances over his two seasons at the club (9 as sub), finding the net three times.
Son of manager Rob, Sean has followed teammate McCrum to Harrogate Railway, joining up with former assistant Andy Sunley. Impressively for a player who only recently turned eighteen, Sean made 56 appearances in a Town shirt (30 as a sub), scoring 7 goals.

Heading in a similar direction is attacking midfielder Dan Coupland who has joined Knaresborough Town. Winner of both Players’ and Supporters’ player of the season awards, Dan joined us in summer 2017 and took the field 41 times last season (twice as sub), scoring 3 goals.

Other summer 2017 signings to depart are Pete Lawrie, Calum Ward, Jack Lazenby and Matthew Robertshaw.

Goalkeeper Pete has joined neighbours Selby Town after making 33 appearances for The Miners (once as sub). Whilst there were moments last season not suitable for those of a nervous disposition, there were highlights, including a star performance in the 1-1 draw against AFC Mansfield.

Despite struggling for much of last season with an ankle injury, striker Calum contributed some important goals to the team last season with 13 in total. Altogether he made 43 appearances in a Town shirt (7 as sub).

Originally joining as a full-back, Jack made the transition to a capable centre-back midway through last season. He leaves to dual-register with neighbours Farsley Celtic and Guiseley after making 25 appearances (3 as a sub) with one goal. Central midfielder/defender Matthew has also left the club. After turning out for our development side, Matt made the step up to the first team towards the end of last season, playing in defence. In total he made 16 appearances, 7 as sub.

And finally, Matthew Savage has left to join Barton Town. The young midfielder joined in January and made 16 appearances for the club (7 as sub).

Best wishes for the future to all!

An updated First Team line-up can be found here.

Updated 17:25 - 2 Aug 2018 by Andrew Marsh

Where next?

First Team vs Nostell MW (A) - Tuesday 31st July Miners make the short journey to the Crofton Community Centre for our final friendly match (kick-off 7:45pm).
First Team vs Thackley (H) - Saturday 19th January The Miners are back at the Bannister Prentice Stadium as we host Bradford neighbours Thackley (kick-off 3pm).

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Sat 26 Jan
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Sat 9 Feb
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