Williams named captain for Pontefract Collieries’ historic season

NEW TEAM-MATES: Jimmy Williams challenges with Tom Dugdale in last year's pre-season game between Pontefract Collieries and Frickley Athletic. The two players will be team-mates in the forthcoming season.
NEW TEAM-MATES: Jimmy Williams challenges with Tom Dugdale in last year's pre-season game between Pontefract Collieries and Frickley Athletic. The two players will be team-mates in the forthcoming season.

Defender Jimmy Williams has been handed the honour of captaining Pontefract Collieries in the club’s historic first season in the Evo-Stik League.

Williams has become a key player as Colls have achieved back to back promotions and is seen as the leader to help the team in what will be a challenging campaign in the Evo-Stik’s East Division.

Ponte have been put in the newly created division along with a number of Yorkshire clubs, including near neighbours Frickley Athletic, the newly merged Ossett United, Tadcaster Albion and Sheffield.

Andy Seed will be the club’s vice-captain and on his agreement to stay with Ponte along with Williams the Colls management team said: “We are obviously delighted that two of our most consistent performers over the last two years have committed to the club.

“They are both well respected lads within the club and the dressing room and we look forward to working closely with them as we look to deliver another successful season.”

The vast majority of last season’s successful squad has agreed to stay with Colls, including top scorer Eli Hey, who banged in 34 goals last season and has rejected interest from other teams to stay at Ponte.

“We’re delighted that Eli has committed his future to the club,” said the Colls management team.

“Eli finished the season as the club’s top scorer and we genuinely believe he would have gone on to score over 50 goals had his season not been interrupted. We’re excited to work with him again and look forward to seeing him progress further.”

Local lad Mikey Dunn is another to commit to the club along with young midfielder Cody Cromack, free scoring right-back Jack Greenhough young striker Vaughan Redford, goalkeeper Ryan Musselwhite and defender Scott Brown.

But midfielder Kane Reece is one of four members of the title-winning side leaving this summer with striker Aaron Moxam, midfielder Calum Stapleton and centre-back Spencer Clarke, who was the committee player of the year, also going elsewhere. Incomings include winger Tom Dugdale who is no stranger at this level of football, having starred for Frickley in the 2017-18 campaign when he won their goal of the season award with a spectacular overhead volley.

Another ex-Frickley player, Fabian Bailey, also a former Rotherham United junior, has joined to boost defensive ranks.

Colls have done well to secure the signature of former six foot four Football League goalkeeper Myles Wright, who has played for Chesterfield, Bradford Park Avenue, Buxton and Shaw Lane.

Ponte have also recruited former Goole AFC and Sheffield FC defender Alex Varley and ex-Mansfield Town wing-back Dan Williams.

Colls, meanwhile, have announced the addition of Jordan Wildey as goalkeeping coach.

His previous experience includes goalkeeping coaching roles at Doncaster Belles and Scunthorpe United academy where he still holds the positions.

He also has non-league experience with both Rossington Main and Ollerton Town.

A statement from the club said: “Jordan will join our first team management structure alongside Craig Parry, Craig Rouse and Luke Jeffs.”

The management team said: “As soon as the season finished we identified that a goalkeeping coach was one of our main priorities. After meeting with various candidates and looking through the plans they had for our goalkeeping section we were clear in our mind that Jordan was the right person to come into the role. We welcome him to the club and look forward to working with him as the season approaches.”