YORK City Knights chairman Jon Flatman has hailed the club's finish in the Betfred Championship play-offs as a "tremendous achievement".

Last weekend, York secured their spot in the Championship's top five with a dramatic 22-18 victory over rivals Featherstone Rovers at Bootham Crescent, twice coming from behind to take the points.

It's the first time that York have made the Championship play-offs since the club's reformation in 2002 and follows on from a successful year in 2018 when the Knights won the League One title.

Flatman, who took control of the club in December 2017, said the victory was a proud day in York's history.

"First of all, I have to say it was a fantastic atmosphere at Bootham Crescent that afternoon," said Flatman.

"It was a key game for both clubs and fans from both sides turned out in huge numbers.

"I think they were a credit to both sets of teams for making it a real special atmosphere and making the day a real event."

"For the York City Knights to make the top five, it’s a tremendous achievement.

"I think it’s really a testament to the work that’s gone in all season from the players and the coaching.

"Of course, that’s been supported by the work of our fans, staff and club partners. I think all of those groups of people associated with the club have helped in delivering a top five finish.

"But the outcome is of course a player-and-coaching-staff-led achievement."

Half-back Connor Robinson claimed a hopeful Featherstone kick as the final hooter sounded, launching the ball into the crowd to spark the wild celebrations.

"The scenes at the end were fantastic," added Flatman.

"I think that it really showed the brotherhood amongst the players and staff at the club.

"Everything associated with that ending was almost as if it was written in the stars.

"It was fitting to see Connor Robinson throw the ball into the stands to seal the win.

"You could see the pure emotion in the moment which started the party atmosphere.

"I think the players, coaching staff and fans were all united in that moment. It was a pleasure to be a part of.

"I was elated as everyone else. It was a real proud achievement for myself and everyone associated with the club."

"I think that moment has to rank up there amongst the many special moments that we’ve enjoyed over the past couple of years.

"It’s very difficult to pull out and rank the achievements because there’s different emotions involved with each of them and it’s difficult to rank your emotions.

"But, it’s certainly right up there in terms of the very best for sure.

"The players have surpassed all of our expectations and those of many others from outside the club as well.

"It was a fantastic moment to celebrate and we’ll look forward to the play-offs now."

Two league games still await the Knights, with trips to Leigh Centurions and Halifax coming after this weekend's break for tomorrow's Challenge Cup final.

The Knights are believed to have the lowest budget of any of their competitors. Toronto Wolfpack and Toulouse Olympique both have full-time squads while Leigh and Featherstone have both recruited high-profile names.

Regardless of the result, Flatman believes that the effort of York won't come into question.

"I think heading into the play-offs now the players will show the drive, focus, belief and commitment that they have done all season," he said.

"They’ll be looking to achieve their very best, put 100% into their effort and their preparations.

"Ultimately, they’ll achieve what they achieve. But that shouldn’t take away from what we’ve already achieved."

Both Flatman and head coach James Ford will have one eye on the squad's recruitment and retention for 2020.

Several players have been rumoured to be joining the club in the trade press, including Thomas Minns, Ben Johnston, Danny Washbrook, Will Sharp and James Green.

Of the Knights' recruitment, Flatman said: "It’s an on-going process and it’s something that we go through every year.

"We’re constantly assessing, discussing and planning to ultimately put the best squad in place that we can.

"Right here right now, we’re unable to speak to part-time players until September 1.

"But, we feel as if we’re in a good position. Conversations will soon commence."