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North Wales Crusaders head coach Anthony Murray and his assistant Alan Hadcroft have both signed new one-year deals with the club ahead of the 2020 campaign.

Murray rejoined Crusaders for a second spell midway through 2018, guiding the club to tenth place in the League 1 table.

In his first full season back at North Wales in 2019, the Wrexham side finished seventh, narrowly missing out on the top six and a place in the play-offs.

His first stint as Crusaders boss, meanwhile, started in the Championship back in 2014 as he took over the reigns from Clive Griffiths, making his side a competitive outfit in the second division.

With five clubs relegated from the Championship that year because of a restructure, North Wales found themselves back in League 1, but Murray took them to the play-offs and they pushed Keighley Cougars all the way in the knockout stages.

Despite losing a number of key players on the eve of the 2016 campaign and having to look to the amateur ranks, the former Leigh Centurions star guided Crusaders to the League 1 Shield final against Newcastle Thunder.

Anthony Murray said: “I’m really pleased with the good work we’ve done since we’ve returned.

“The team have really kicked on, we’ve put a competitive team out there and jumped a couple of places in the table.

“We were just three points off our target of making the play-offs in the end.

“As the season went on, we got better at closing games out and it was probably down to a bit of a lack of experience at the start of the campaign.

“When we got into leads later on in the season, we kept them as we got ourselves into better territorial positions and played a lot smarter.

“I’m hoping we can kick on next year now and it’s going to be important to retain most of the squad from last year to do that.

“People have retried and some players will be moving on so it’ll naturally be difficult to replace some of those, but that’s the challenge.

“It’s important that we recruit the right people to continue to take us in the right direction.”

Crusaders chief executive Andy Moulsdale said: “I’m delighted that Muzza (Anthony Murray) and Alan will be staying on for the 2020 season.

“We had some tough times at the start of the year, but we stuck to what we believed in and had some memorable results, such as being the only team to beat champions Whitehaven at their own ground.

“With a bit of luck in some tight games at the start of the season, I’m convinced we would’ve made the play-offs.

“I’m made up for Muzza that he has been shortlisted for coach of the year by his peers.

“I know how hard Muzza works, how much the lads think of him and this is recognition of that.”