VICTORIOUS Morton manager Jim Duffy described his side’s dramatic League One title success as an unbelievable achievement and dedicated the win to the late Arthur Montford.

Broadcasting icon Mr Montford, a former Cappielow director and lifelong fan, sadly passed away on 26 November last year aged 85.

And amidst the chaos of the ecstatic celebrations that followed the championship-clinching 3-1 win over Peterhead on Saturday, Duffy took time to pay homage to the former Scotsport presenter.

The 56-year-old said: “It feels wonderful. It was an unbelievably tough campaign and an unbelievable achievement.

“I’m thrilled for the chairman, I’m thrilled for the players, and it was fitting that the late Arthur Montford’s team won the league in the season he passed away.

“Hopefully this is a wee tribute to the Montford family. I hope they enjoyed their day in this year of sadness.” When Duffy took the reins last May, he inherited four signed first-team players in Nicolas Caraux, Fouad Bachirou, who was sold before the league season began, Joe McKee and Reece Hands.

Thomas O’Ware, Derek Gaston and David McNeil signed contract extensions while teenage defender Mark Russell would make a significant breakthrough from the development squad.

But of the 26 individuals to make a first-team appearance, 18 were new additions made over the course of the campaign. And a delighted Duffy waxed lyrical about the group, insisting they have proven to be worthy champions and deserve to savour their success.

He added: “It was fantastic to put a team together in the summer, a team that didn’t know each other, and win the league.

“If you look at that starting line-up only Tom O’Ware, Gats [Derek Gaston] and Mark Russell, who is only a kid, were here last season. Everyone else was brought in to the club.

“And I can’t compliment the players enough for their attitude, determination and skill. We needed to win our last four games and we did that.

“Today we showed some fantastic moments of skill, some good finishes — Michael [Miller] scored a phenomenal strike that got us back in it — and got a wee break with the sending off.

“Any questions over the commitment of the Peterhead players was thrown out straight away with them scoring early. It was total commitment from them, as I knew it would be.

“But we had a job to do: to win the match. To show that courage to come from a goal down to win the match in such dramatic fashion was brilliant and the players deserve a lot of credit.

“They’ve done that time and time again this season, and I could never understand some of the criticism the players were getting because they gave everything in every match.

“You make mistakes in football, and they made some — but they never lay down; they had a fantastic mentality, they had real character, put a tremendous amount of effort in and got their reward. We won more games than anybody and scored more goals than anybody. When you do that you’re worthy champions. They deserve to enjoy this day and milk it for everything it’s worth.” The former Ton defender was fulsome in the praise of his backroom staff and said it was a real team effort behind the scenes too.

He told the Tele: “It’s been a tough season and everyone really had to work hard. Craig McPherson has been outstanding with the players.

“Davie Wylie has done a magnificent job, with the form of Derek Gaston, winning all the supporters’ Player of the Year awards, which I’d like to congratulate him on.

“Alyson, our physio, does a tremendous amount of work and doesn’t have the same resources big clubs have, so she has to put in a lot of time with the players.

“We have a great group of players, but you also need the staff to work with them and I want to compliment them.” But there will be no rest for the management team as they now turn their attentions to building for next season’s Championship campaign.

Duffy concluded: “It’s been enjoyable and we look forward to the Championship now. I think I’ve only got three signed players for next year so I’ve got another job to do now to get that ready.

“That’ll start in about two days. I’ll take Sunday and Monday off and then we’ll get back and turn our focus to next season on Tuesday.”