ALUN Rossiter is sure Nick Morris has all the credentials to make it right to the very top of the sport after confirming the Australian would return to Swindon Robins next year.

Morris will be back at the Abbey Stadium for a seventh successive season in 2018 and this time he will be leading from the front after Rossiter revealed he will be the Robins’ new number one.

The 23-year-old takes over that responsibility from Jason Doyle, with the Swindon senior management making the painful decision to let the reigning world champion go for next year in conjunction with new rules.

As part of regulations for the 2018 campaign, top-flight clubs in Great Britain can only field one rider with an average higher than eight in their line-up.

Both Doyle and Morris finished the 2017 season with a figure in excess of that and it is the latter who the Robins had opted to retain for next year.

Morris played a pivotal role in Swindon’s route to the SGB Premiership title back in October and team manager Rossiter believes his performances are an indicator that the club have a very special talent on their hands.

“He had a great year this year and I hope he can do the same next year,” said Rossiter.

“Obviously he had the pressure taken off him because he had Jason’s wealth of experience alongside him but it was the season where he took it to another level.

“If he has got plans to kick on again, next year has got to be the one that’s going to make him an even better rider.

“I think he has got the capabilities of becoming a world-class rider. He showed all the attributes this year and people forget he is still very young – look at Jason and what age he became world champion.

“Nick is not a million miles away from that really top level but he has not quite got that consistency yet, so next year is another big step for him.”

Morris becomes the second member to be unveiled in Swindon’s 2018 septet after Polish ace Tobiasz Musielak was confirmed to also be returning for next season.

Doyle finished last season with the top average in the Premiership and Rossiter says Morris’ slightly lower total is what got him the nod to stay on as he looks to build another team capable of challenging for the title.

“I have made it clear I am not comfortable with the rules. I was more than happy to have both Jason and Nick back,” said Rossiter.

“The decision was just on the team building front. It is about winning and trying to get the best team out there. It gives us a few more points to play with and it gives us a bit more flexibility.

“Jason had the experience and was world champion, so it could backfire on me, but I am confident Nick can have another good season, he has certainly come on leaps and bounds this year.

“Hopefully we have done the right thing, we will soon find out.”