PAT RAINFORD is the latest player to commit his future to the North Wales Crusaders.

It’s been a busy off-season so far for player-coach Carl Forster, who has been nominated for the 2023 League One coach of the year in a Total RL readers poll, and he is delighted that Rainford will remain in the set-up for the 2024 season.

Rainford, who is the 11th player to re-sign for the club for 2024, joined the North Wales Crusaders back in 2022 and he made his debut against Swinton Lions in the Challenge Cup.

The 26-year-old has made 23 appearance during his time with the Colwyn Bay-based club and 18 of these came last season during the charge towards the grand final of the League One play-offs.

Rainford, who has scored five tries for the side, was a key element as Crusaders battled their way through to the final, where they eventually lost out 18-6 at hosts Doncaster.

Rainford told the Crusaders’ website: “I’m delighted to signed at Cru for another year.

“I really enjoyed last season and I can’t wait to get going again.

“Overall it was a great year reaching the final and the aim will be to go one better this time round.

“The fans have always been class with me, so to be able to give my all for them for another year is great.”

Forster, busy preparing for his second season at the helm, added: “Pat typifies how we want to play the game, he’s tough, physical and plays on effort.

“He established himself in the team last year and I’m looking forward to working with him again this season with even more responsibility.

“He’s a top professional and leads from the front with his actions.”

The announcement follows the news that Samoan international Patrick Ah Van will be back in North Wales next season.

After two seasons with the Crusaders, he spent last season at Oldham, bagging 15 tries in his 17 League One appearances.

Meanwhile, North Wales Crusaders are looking for fans’ opinions on a number of proposals for the 2024 campaign.

A recent supporters’ meeting was well attended at Maesgwyn, in Wrexham, and Crusaders’ CEO Andy Moulsdale informed fans of a number of proposals that are in place.

A fans’ survey is available on the club’s website and it will close for submissions at 7pm tomorrow evening (Thursday).

The 2024 League One season will consist of 10 home games and 10 away games, which will also include four loop fixtures.

Crusaders will also be competing in the newly formatted 1895 Cup, which will see the North Wales side playing two fixtures at home next January and February.

Fans can also look forward to Challenge Cup action, with ties dove-tailing between the 1895 Cup matches.