AUCHINLECK Talbot will be without one of their star players next season.

It comes as Ross Taylor officially departed the club, signing a two-year deal with SPFL League Two side Stenhousemuir.

Taylor leaves having spent only one season at The Bot, though it is fair to say the 19-year-old has shone during his short spell in East Ayrshire.

Widely regarded as one of the best players in the West of Scotland Football League (WoSFL) this season, Taylor has put in a string of stellar performances no matter where he has played this season.

Arriving after leaving Greenock Morton in 2022, he had previous experience in the WoSFL - featuring on loan at Kilbirnie Ladeside last season, where he featured most often at right back.

Though for Talbot this season, he has also featured in a number of attacking roles and in nearly 50 appearances was into double figure goals for Tommy Sloan's side.

A real fans favourite, Taylor wished Talbot all the best as he departed the club, where he won the WoSFL Cup this season.

In a social media post, he said: "Would like to thank everyone at Auchinleck. Loved every minute I was there and was great group of lads.

"(I) Would also like to thank the fans who supported me from day one."

The club wished him well upon his departure.

A Talbot spokesperson said: "Congratulations Ross on your move to Stenhousemuir.

"Wishing you all the best as you embark on this exciting new chapter in your career."

And in Stenhousemuir, Taylor has picked a road well travelled for players moving into senior football from the former junior leagues.

Stenny's player of the season this campaign was Nicky Jamieson - a centre back who starred for Largs Thistle, after playing for Greenock Morton.

Following spells with Queen's Park and Alloa, Jamieson has become a real favourite Ochilview Park.

The club also signed William Sewell from Largs Thistle last summer - who was the top scorer in the WoSFL in the 2021/22 season.

Though Sewell would then return to Largs in February, he scored five goals in only 1,025 minutes and proves that Stenny have a keen eye for talent from the WoSFL.

Club manager Gary Naysmith also told of his delight, while speaking to Stenhousemuir's club website.

He said: “I am delighted that we have been able to sign Ross on a two year contract after a very impressive season at Auchinleck Talbot.

“Ross is primarily a right sided attacking midfielder but he is also a very versatile player who can play in a number of positions.

"Although he is still only 19, Ross made nearly 50 appearances for Auchinleck this season and was also into double figures for goals.

"He was also named West Of Scotland League Player of the Year which is no mean feat for a 19 year old in a very competitive division.

“As a club, we really have put a lot of effort into getting this signing over the line as there was a lot of competition for Ross’ signature and we are delighted that he has chosen Stenhousmuir as the right club to progress his career."

"I must also thank Auchinleck Talbot for their help in making this deal go as smoothly as it did.”