A KEY figure in North Wales Crusaders’ terrific end-of-season run in the League 1 play-offs will be back for 2024.

Toby Hughes helped Carl Forster’s side to make it all the way through to the grand final of the play-offs this year and the halfback will be looking for a similar outcome when the new campaign gets underway.

The former Newton Storm and England Community Lions player slotted over a dramatic drop goal in the play-off win at Oldham and he also scored in the final defeat at Doncaster.

Hughes told the club’s website: “I am buzzing to re-sign for Cru in 2024.

“We have proven as a group what we can do towards the back end of last year and want to build on that next year.

“It was a no brainer for me, the club is surrounded by a great feel and great people.

“The fans were class last year and gave us that extra push when we needed it in the play-off run. I can’t wait to see them all down again next year.

“I would just like to say a massive thanks to Mosey (Andy Moulsdale), Darren (Morson), Carl (Forster), Simmo (Stu Simmons) and Si (Reynolds) for giving me the opportunity to go again.”

Crusaders’ player-coach Forster added: “It’s great to keep Toby. He showed last season his quality and he was exactly what we needed to bring in at that time.

“He guides us around the field and will only get better with more experience and game time. With a full pre-season with the team I’m excited to be working alongside him.”

In a further boost to the squad, back rower Matty Unsworth is another addition.

Unsworth signs from Salford Red Devils, where he played was the reserve coach’s player of the year last season.

As well as scoring five tries, Unsworth was made captain towards the end of the campaign.

Forster said: “Matty is a real quality player and having worked on this for a long time, really happy to get it over the line.

“He has real leadership skills and is a very skilful player. I’m looking forward to seeing him in a Cru shirt.”

On his move to North Wales, Unsworth said: “I’m delighted to sign and with speaking to Foz (Forster) I can’t wait to get stuck into pre-season with the lads and hopefully build on the season they had last year.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity Salford have given me the last couple of years but I’m ready for the new challenge.”

Crusaders have also announced the signing of Callum Cameron from Oldham.

Cameron was formerly part of the Castleford Tigers scholarship programme and he later played for Huddersfield Giants academy before joining Oldham.

The 23-year-old second rower made 23 appearances during his two-year stint at Oldham, scoring three tries.

Cameron said: “Carl contacted me a few weeks ago.

“After our conversation I was really impressed with his ambitions for me as a player and also the club as a whole.

“I’m looking forward to 2024 and playing in front of the Cru fans.

“I thought they were great in the play-off game at Boundary Park and having fans like that is always a massive boost.”

Forster added: “Really happy to bring Callum into the squad.

“He’s a real aggressive player which is something we’ve identified we need.

“He’s a no nonsense, hard worker and will fit into the group perfect.”