NEW RUGBY Town boss Gary Mills has moved to fill the void left in the heart of his defence following the departure of skipper Alex Gudger by signing Jason Lee from Kettering.
The 32-year-old was a regular feature in the Southern League Central Division champions’ line-up having joined them near the start of the campaign from King’s Lynn, where he had made 94 appearances in two years.
With Gudger’s switch to Conference North Worcester City confirmed at the end of last week, one of Mills’ main priorities was an experienced, imposing figure to partner Mason Rowley at centre-back.
And Lee certainly fits the bill after a long non-league career which also includes spells at Banbury, Daventry, Cogenhoe and Long Buckby.
It means Lee will once again team up with striker David Kolodynski, who has also made the switch back to Town from the Poppies, and takes the number of players already committing themselves to the club for the coming season to 12.
Another high profile striker remaining at Butlin Road is Seb Lake-Gaskin who recently signed a one-year extension to keep him at the club until May 2016.
The 24-year-old is currently eighth in Rugby’s all time list of senior goalscorers with 64 goals in 154 appearances will be hoping to recapture his best form in the 2015/16 season.
Lake-Gaskin’s blistering pace, trickery and eye for a pass make him a constant threat to any defence and he formed a deadly partnership with David Kolodynski in the 2012/13 season as they shared 52 league goals between them.
He netted 28 goals and created 16 others the following season which earned him a clean sweep of the end of season awards, but last season proved to be a tricky one of Lake-Gaskin.
He missed a major chunk of the campaign with an ankle injury which he picked up in October but will be hoping to make a return to form next season.
Steve Towers, Rob Parker, Kurtis Revan and defender Ben Jackson have all moved the Valley over the summer, with Neil Collett, Craig Kelly, Lewis Rankin and Lewis McBride all expected to return for another campaign.
Defender Ben George will also try his luck at a higher level after he signed for Southern League Premier new boys Leamington, whilst Richard Blythe and Mitchell Piggon make a move down by following Robbie Banks to Coventry Sphinx.
Striker Richard Gregory has returned to Stratford after 12 goals in 15 starts for Town in the second half of last season.