YORK City Knights have announced the retention of captain Chris Clarkson for the 2022 season.

Clarkson joined the Knights ahead of the 2020 season from Castleford Tigers and was handed the captaincy by head coach James Ford at the start of this year.

The 31-year-old was a versatile part of York's squad last season, featuring at half-back and hooker amid a series of injuries as well as his usual spot in the back-row.

On Clarkson’s retention, Knights head coach James Ford said: “Chris is a very important re-signing for us.

“He works tremendously hard in attack and defence and has epitomised our team first mentality by playing in numerous positions without a second’s doubt to how it would impact on him.

“I enjoyed working with Chris and his abilities and characteristics will be absolutely key next season.”

After a ninth-placed finish for York in 2021, the former Betfred Super League Grand Final winner is hoping for an improved campaign next year.

“It was always something that I wanted to do, to go round again, and to put right what went wrong in 2021," admitted Clarkson.

“Last year, we underachieved a little bit and it’s difficult and frustrating for players when we’re not succeeding.

"The coaching staff have adjusted some things for 2022 and, hopefully, our ambitions can come to fruition next year and I’m glad to be a part of that.”

Clarkson succeeded veteran Tim Spears as captain earlier this year and will likely have extra leadership responsibilities following the retirement of Spears during the off-season, as well the departures of experienced players such as Ryan Atkins, Danny Washbrook and Sam Scott.

“It took a while for me to adapt to being the captain, to figure out what kind of leader I am, when to lead by actions, to say the right things and when to let other people lead, as well," he conceded.

“Towards the middle of the year, I think I got that and it was a massive learning curve for me.

"It helped me both on and off the field and I feel like, with that foundation in place, it’ll be an easy transition into 2022 and I can hit the ground running.”

Joining Clarkson in the Knights squad for 2022 are a number of former Hull KR players, several of whom the forward is familiar with through his time at Craven Park.

“I’ve played with a few of them there and they left KR as young players and now they’re coming to York having learnt the game," he said.

"The likes of Liam Harris and Will Oakes, they have gone away and played some good rugby in some tough teams, especially Liam who helped Halifax to the play-offs.

“It’s great to have him coming back and I’ve played with Jamie Ellis as well at Hull KR.

"He’s got great experience at some top Championship clubs, and he’ll be bringing that to us and kicking us on.”