THEY may have enjoyed the greatest season in their history, but Humshaugh are ready to push for more honours in 2019.

The West Tyne League Division One league and cup winners will open the new campaign at home to Belsay on Saturday.

And while they will have to get used to life without the newly retired Allan Murray, Humshaugh have signed up Archie Fletcher from Allendale.

Captain Andy Crawford said: “You never want to lose players. Allan will be a big miss but we have to adapt.

“There isn’t a big change in personnel for us. It’s mainly the same group of lads from last season. We have a good team spirit and we’ll be giving it our best shot.

“Last season might have been a one off, but only time will tell. It’s up to us to go out there and see what the season brings.

“There are some good teams in the West Tyne League and I think everyone is looking forward to getting back into action again.”

There will be 12 teams in Division One this season, despite the departure of 2017 champions Allendale to the Northumberland and Tyneside League.

Last year’s Division Two winners Stamfordham will line-up in the top division, as will Mitford A, who were runners-up in Division Two last season.

West Tyne League results secretary, and Humshaugh groundsman Dickie Purvis said: “I’ve enjoyed preparing the field and I just can’t wait for the cricket to get started.

“There will be a bit of a change with Allendale leaving, but Stamfordham did well to win the second division last season, and it will be fascinating to see how they get on in the top division this year.”

Stamfordham have been handed a home game against Benwell Hill on the opening day of the season.

Division One cricket is befitting of a club which has a recently refurbished sports pavilion.

And earlier this month, Stamfordham received a grant of £2,000 from Northumberland County Council’s community chest fund.

The funding will go towards the cost of purchasing new equipment to improve the condition of the pitch at the popular club.