Shropshire Star

Four Shropshire cricket coaches honoured at awards

Four Shropshire cricket coaches were honoured at the Board’s annual Presentation Night held in the Sovereign Suite at Shrewsbury Town’s Montgomery Waters Meadow.


All four were presented with their awards by Worcestershire and Shropshire fast bowler Dillon Pennington who was one of more than 250 people in attendance on the night.

The Young Coach of the Year award went to Josh Anders from Shrewsbury CC who was unfortunately unable to attend. It was collected on his behalf by John Foster.

Ed Ashlin, who is secretary of the Shropshire Cricket Coaches Association, said: “Josh has been instrumental in the development of both of young people and more recently the ladies at their club.

“He dedicated many hours to the juniors over the years and in particular this year, running and supporting the All Stars and Dynamos sessions at their club as well as junior hardball activity, stepping up to coach games for the U11, U13 & U15 hardball teams.

“He has demonstrated excellent commitment to the club, juniors and ladies sections. Due to this, and their developing coaching skills, they have encouraged many of the juniors and ladies to continue playing cricket and encouraging the ladies to take up coaching.”

The Coach of the Year award went to Naomi Payne from Oswestry CC.

Ed said: “The nomination for Naomi was impressive, with praise from parents, local schools and nearby clubs; there is no doubt she has gone the extra mile to extend the reach of cricket in and around their club.

“Naomi has single-handedly led the development and growth of the Women & Girls section at her club.

“She has gone above and beyond to create relationships with sponsors, local schools and parents as well as delivering weekly training sessions for those looking to develop their confidence and skills.

“As a result, she has grown the Women’s section at their club with Women’s Softball and Hardball teams entered in competitions all year round.

“The results of her hard work and dedication can be seen both on and off the pitch with an enhanced Women and Girls section now regularly competing across formats, fixture management as well as develop relationships with the local community.”

The Outstanding Contribution – Services to Coaching Award went to Andrew Leggatt from Oswestry CC.

Ed said: “Andrew has had a huge impact on junior cricket at their club for over 20 years.

“Sadly, he stepped down from their role as Junior Coordinator at the end of 2022 after many years of leading junior training sessions and organising teams at every age group.

“As well as this, he has overseen the accreditations of coaches to ensure qualifications are up to date and that coaches have enough kit to deliver effective coaching sessions.

“He has also been instrumental in the Clubmark process. Without his dedication, the club would not have the junior section that it continues to produce.”

The Outstanding Services to Coach Development award went to Rod Jones.

Ed said: “Rod has had a huge impact on coaching and coach development within Shropshire over a long period of time.

“He was one of the early ECB ‘tutors’ and have worked extensively on ECB certificated courses, enabling coaches to pass through and have a positive impact in the field with their clubs and schools.

“He is a highly-experienced Coach Developer and has an excellent manner with prospective coaches on course and is able to support and challenge.

“Rod has also been involved in the organisation and delivery of Shropshire Coaches Association local conferences - days that are always memorable and hugely beneficial to the coaching family in Shropshire.

“Furthermore, he has been involved in providing additional CPD support for coaches in Shropshire by delivering and organising specific coaching workshops and masterclasses.

“Rod has given up significant time on a voluntary basis in their role within the Shropshire Cricket Coaches Association.

“He has previously held the role of Chairman and is currently Vice-Chairman, working closely with the cricket board to organise and run courses and support the overall development of coaches within the County.”

Overall, the winner of this award is an outstanding Coach Developer and Mentor and fully deserves to be recognised for their huge contribution towards Coach Development in Shropshire at all levels within the game.