Boost for Sheffield Eagles as key player pledges to stay

Matty James Sheffield Eagles
Matty James Sheffield Eagles
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Sheffield Eagles skipper Matty James will remain with the club next season.

James played an integral role this season for Mark Aston’s side, making 31 appearances, whilst also taking on the responsibility of the captaincy.

With the likes of Elliot Minchella and Garry Lo moving onto pastures new, Eagles face a fight to keep hold of some of their top performers. It is rumoured that vice-captain Scott Wheeldon will join Featherstone, so the news that James wants to remain will hearten coach Aston, who again faces another close season rebuild of his squad.

“From my point of view I will definitely be staying,” James said. “We will have a terrific group of lads here who will be staying. One or two will move on, but I love the place and hopefully we can get back to where we belong as quick as possible.” James joined Eagles in 2016 as part of the full-time revolution which quickly went sour.

James was handed the captain’s armband after impressing Aston with a number of mature displays. James admitted he has enjoyed the senior role, and would like the opportunity to lead the side again.

“It would be massive, but obviously Tubbs (Aston) will make that decision,” he added. “I would love to lead this team again. I have really enjoyed the responsibility this year.”

Looking back over Saturday’s Championship Shield final defeat to Toulouse, James was frustrated Eagles let a promising position slip. They were in command but conceded four tries either side of the interval to all but end their chances of ending the season with some silverware.

“We were leading for the first 30 minutes, and then whilst I am not making excuses, a couple of decisions went their way,” James said. “That gave them a lift.”