Shropshire Star

Young cricketers in the spotlight as awards are dished out

Dozens of awards were handed out to a cross section of winners from the Shropshire cricket community at the Board’s Annual Presentation Evening.

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This year, the Cricket Shropshire event was held at the Albright Hussey Hotel near Shrewsbury.

Chair Adrian Collins welcomed guests to the evening and hailed the impact volunteers had on the ongoing success of cricket in Shropshire.

He also thanked sponsors Dyke Yaxley USA, Strategic Leisure and the Shropshire Star for their input which helps the Board continue to provide a varied offer across a range of cricket in the county.

He also urged all clubs to continue to invest in youngsters and the development of the sport – the future of the game.

The wide scope of cricket events offered in Shropshire now is highlighted by the fact that this was the third presentation event organised by the Board this year.

There has already been a Junior Presentation Day where awards were handed out to the star performers in the Shropshire County Age Group pathway and also those who have been through the Board’s Young Ambassadors programme.

Then there was also a special Women & Girls Awards night held at the Wroxeter Hotel last month – highlighting the big growth in women and girls’ cricket in the county

Awards were handed out in a number of categories during the Presentation Evening – including Performance, Seniors, Officiating, Women & Girls, Community and Disability.

Morgan Ward

The awards were presented by a range of guests including Worcestershire’s Joe Leach who is also one of Cricket Shropshire’s Directors and Rachel Fowler from Women and Girls Recreational cricket sponsors Strategic Leisure.

There was also a collection on the night for Shropshire MIND in memory of Anna Shore from Ellesmere CC who recently passed away. Donations can still be made via the link

We will be providing a series of reports from the evening highlighting the inspiring stories of the award winners – starting here with the overall Junior and Senior performance cricket awards.

Junior Boy –Ollie Dyson

Cricket Shropshire Pathway Manager Ed Ashlin said: “Ollie had a really successful 2023 season and showed glimpses of the potential to become a genuine all-rounder in the future. He scored more than 350 runs including a superb century at the Under 13 Taunton festival against a California team with some excellent spin bowling. He is a hard-hitting batter who

hits really well down the ground but also has the ability to bowl with good pace and a high level of skill.”

Junior Girl – Isabelle Crann

Cricket Shropshire Pathway Lead (Girls) Darrell Corfield said: “Isabelle has improved massively throughout 2023 thanks to her hard work and dedication throughout winter training and the summer season. She has turned into a bona fide all-rounder scoring runs aplenty for Shropshire Under 13s including a maiden fifty, whilst her leg spin bowling has attained a high level that saw her selected for the Under 15s and Under 18s – taking important wickets in both groups.”

Youth Male – Morgan Ward

Ed said: “Morgan was the standout batter through the season with some big contributions. He scored 464 runs and an average of more than 35 and a strike rate of 87. His 117 was the foundation for the win over Leicestershire, a superb innings where he showed great maturity and skill. He went onto score 121 at the Taunton Festival when he was carrying an injury, resulting in eighteen 4s and five 6s He has a strong work ethic and desire to improve further and we look forward to seeing his progression in the next 12 months.”

Youth Female – Amy Griffiths

Darrel said: “Expectation is never easy to manage but in 2023 Amy has managed it superbly with more than 300 county runs, with a strike rate of more than 95 against some very good bowling attacks. In addition, the added pressure of being a front-line bowler failed to hinder her progress as she bagged a hatful of wickets whilst leading from the front in the field. She has been on the Central Sparks EPP programme for the last two years and her hard work and dedication over those years have helped her to be selected on the Full Academy in 2023-24.”

Gerry Gladwell (Wicket-keeper) – Will Parkinson Witte

Ed said: “Will stands out for his skills and also his competitive spirit. He is a livewire behind the stumps and always looking to make an impact on the game. His work standing up to the stumps really helped our Under 13 bowlers. He took 12 wicket-keeping dismissals and was also a key batter in a side that had a successful summer. It’s exciting that Will still has room for development and we look forward to supporting him to achieve his goals in the future.”

This year’s Presentation Evening also saw the Seniors awards handed out for the first time in a couple of years.

Over 50s Players Players of the Year – Mark Jones Ian Walker

Alberbury’s Mark Jones was the Over 50s top runs scorer with 296 at an average of 37 including three half centuries and a top score of 54 against Staffordshire.

Over 50s Skipper Carl Ward said: “I know by his high standards Ian (Walker) would have wanted to score more, but he hit 147 runs in a very competitive league at an average of 24, with two half centuries including 53 against Warwickshire. He is also a skilful wicket-keeper who always helps the bowlers by standing up – with 12 victims (seven catches and five

stumpings). He also represented England Over 50s twice during the Summer, taking a man-of-the-match award in one of those games.

The Over 50s bowling award went to Chris Hodson.

Over 60s Players Player of the Year – Mo Fiaz

In his first full season for the Over 60s, Mo scored 431 runs at an average of more than 70, including a brilliant 157 off 127 balls against Leicestershire in a big win for his side.

Images available from Kidz in Focus, email