Thornhill Trojans head coach James Ratcliffe has hailed the effort of his players following the club’s promotion to the National Conference League Premier Division.

Ratcliffe’s side sealed promotion to the community game’s top level with victory over Lock Lane on Saturday afternoon.

Addressing the fans and players after their win, the Thornhill boss said: “I’m absolutely over the moon and I know the boys are over the moon.

“We were favourites to go down at the start of the season and out at 20/1 to win the league, but this bunch of players have gone and done it. They’re the champions.

“The success boils down to this group of 55, 60 players that make up our first and second teams.

“It’s been a big challenge, but everybody has stood up to it and they’ve produced their best every single week.”

Ratcliffe also thanked the sponsors who’ve backed the club financially throughout the campaign.

“I’d like thank all of our sponsors this year,” he said.

“We had a plan of getting back to the top and now we’re back in the Premier division, and that’s where this clubs needs to be.

“Everybody has played a part in the success we’ve had so far and now we have another big challenge in front of us.”

Trojans travel to face York Acorn on Saturday before finishing the campaign with a home match against Oulton Raiders.

“We still have two games to go, but the monkey is off our back now,” added Ratcliffe.

“We can go out and play and enjoy ourselves, because we’ve shown our champion spirit during these last few weeks.”