DALE Hodge has been reunited with brother Aaron at AFC?Ludlow.

The stylish playmaker has rejoined the club in time for their West Midlands (Regional)?League curtain-raiser at Shenstone Pathfinder this weekend.

The two Hodge siblings left Ludlow last season to play key roles for Kington Town as the north Herefordshire outfit were crowned Division Two champions in a memorable campaign. Aaron scored 21 goals and Dale nine as Kington strung together a 23-match unbeaten run to lift the title.

But they have both opted to return to Ludlow for 2015-16 rather than stay at Kington for the new Division One campaign - though their other brother, Nathan, is now living in Milton Keynes and is unlikely to figure for AFC this season.

Dale Hodge returns after spending some of the pre-season with the new Hereford FC side, scoring a eye-catching goal in their 3-2 friendly win at Malvern Town.

He wasn’t offered a permanent deal by Hereford boss Peter Beadle and has decided to follow brother Aaron in returning to Ludlow.

AFC boss Dave Cooper was delighted with the news, saying: “Dale is a massive signing for us and having both of them back us is a real boost. They will only improve us, though Aaron has had a back problem for the last week or so and hasn’t played in the last couple of friendlies. Hopefully he will be OK for this weekend.

“I am happy with the squad and I think it is a lot stronger, and a lot better, than last year. If we turn up this season I think we have a great chance of pushing for promotion from the start."

Cooper’s side continued their pre-season countdown by following last Tuesday’s 9-0 romp against Madeley Sports - the goals came from Ryan Lewis (2), Marion Jusko (2), Dale Hodge (2), Danny Crowther, Danny Gower and Sean Evans - with a 7-1 stroll against Highley at the Ludlow Football Stadium last Saturday.

Keanu Cooper, back after his injury scare in the previous week’s game with Enville, claimed a first-half hat-trick as Ludlow opened up a 5-0 interval lead and the others came from Dale Hodge (2) and Gower (2), though boss Cooper admitted it was something of a “mismatch” and that some of his players didn’t do themselves justice.

Ludlow were having their last friendly at Clee Hill on Tuesday night before Cooper named his final squad for Saturday’s opening WML game in Staffordshire.

Ludlow’s first home game is the following Saturday against Wem Town.

AFC Ludlow (from) Ian Havard, Jack Beaumont, Aaron Dovey, Dickie Everall, Luke Hicks, Aaron Hodge, Rob Vass, Keanu Cooper, Dale Hodge, Jamie Marsh, Jamie Edwards, Danny Crowther, Jason Wellings, Danny Gower, Marion Jusko, Jamie Smith, Ryan Lewis, Jamie Hammonds, George Sankey, Adrian Marsh.

Meanwhile, Woofferton player-secretary Dave Thomas has stood down from the post - and joined Herefordshire League rivals Orleton Colts.

Thomas, affectionately known as Magnum, joined Woofferton in 1999 but then played for Leintwardine and Orleton before returning to the club six years ago.

He said: “It was a hard decision but due to work commitments I felt I was unable to continue with the secretarial duties.

“I decided it was time to concentrate on just playing, as at 43 there might not be many more seasons for me. Kristian Morgan at Orleton asked me to sign and I am looking forward to a fresh challenge.”

Premier Division Orleton, who beat Presteigne 5-0 last Thursday with goals from Martin Jones, Kyle Whitticase, Alex King, Will Caswell and Chris Breakwell, kick off the new league campaign with a home game with Wellington Reserves on Saturday week (August 15).

Tenbury United start with a trip to Leominster Town and then Orleton then host Tenbury on Tuesday, August 18.

The Division One programme opens on Saturday, August 29 with Tenbury Town entertaining Wellington Colts, Woofferton travelling to Bromyard FC and Orleton Colts Reserves away at Belmont Wanderers.

*This Saturday Woofferton host their annual charity tournament, the Tim Ezzard Memorial Cup (2pm).

Woofferton, Tenbury Town, Roebuck and Orleton Colts Reserves are the four teams taking part and there will be a prize raffle and refreshments available.