Cricket groundsmen honoured at Lord's
By Ellie Tait
For the third year, four groundsmen have been honoured at the home of English cricket when they each received a Cricket World & Pitchcare Cricket Groundsman of the Year Award for 2005.
The awards recognise the hard work and high standards achieved by cricket groundsmen in the recreational game and are split into four categories - educational establishments, private clubs, local authorities and community pitches.
Nominations were received through Cricket World® magazine, and the www.cricketworld.com and Pitchcare.com websites. Judging of the shortlisted entries was carried out in March by Pitchcare's editor, Laurence Gale MSc at locations as far apart as Aberdeen and Jersey.
The presentations were made to Keith Exton, who won the educational establishments award for the second year in succession, Nigel Nerac, Gordon Gill and Roy Takle by former Indian wicket-keeper Farokh Engineer in the presence of sponsors and invited guests. The winners then enjoyed lunch at the Lord's Tavern before taking their Executive Box seats in the grandstand to enjoy the afternoon's cricket.
|Ian Vautier receiving award for Nigel Nerec||Keith Exton|
|Roy Takle||Gordon Gill|
Alastair Symondson, Editor of Cricket World magazine and Dave Saltman from Pitchcare both expressed their admiration for the winning groundsmen and thanked the sponsors, whose continuing support makes the awards possible.
Sponsors are:-John Deere, Lloyds of Letchworth, Ransomes, SISIS Equipment (Macclesfield), Groundsman Industries, Dennis Mowers, Tildenet, Synergy Products, C.H. Binder, Goundreys and Flicx UK.
The winners and sponsors all agreed that the competition is essential for raising the profile of the sport at all levels. Without the hard work and commitment showed by groundsmen, the game of cricket at grass roots level would cease to function.
In fact, everyone involved in the awards has agreed to look into additional opportunities to raise the awareness of the awards and how new people can be recruited into cricket groundsmanship.
This year, for the first time, groundsmen working overseas are being invited to participate in the awards. For further information or to make your nomination visit www.cricketworld.com or www.pitchcare.com.
Winner - Nigel Nerac (States of Jersey Public Services)
Second - Simon Lawrence (Castle Park CC, Colchester)
Third - Ian Vautier (Grainville Playing Fields, Jersey)
Winner - Gordon Gill (Bath CC)
Second - Paul Tatton (Haydock CC)
Third - Andy Clarke (Shenley Cricket Centre)
Commended - Andy Gilder (Bishop Stortford Sports Trust CC)
Winner - Keith Exton (Oakham School)
Second - George Alexander (Tonbridge School)
Third - Matt Pullen (Whitgift School)
Commended - Ian Smith (St Albans School)
Winner - Roy Takle - (Brompton Ralph CC, Somerset.)
Second - Jerry Dovey - (Letchworth CC)
Third - Neil Lambourne - (Aston Rowant CC)