The dust has settled and the stumps have been put away as the 2023 season was recognised with another hugely successful and well-attended Calmore Sports Club Presentation evening where some outstanding achievements were remembered and trophies awarded.
It was a third successive third place finish for the first XI in SPCL Division One, a very fine first season for the Second XI following their promotion into Hampshire Division 2, a third place and possible promotion for the 3rd XI at the first time of asking in Hampshire 5 South-West while the 4th XI blooded some impressive young players which is highly encouraging for the future. There was also plenty of celebration for the Southern Stars Women’s team, who put in some fine showings in their second league campaign of ‘hard ball’ cricket.
The major winner of the night was the Pete Lavelle Shield recipient Steve Latimore (more on that here) whilst the Yorkshireman Trophy – presented for the first time since the very sad and untimely passing of ‘Yorkshire Alan’, Alan Rimmington – went to Ben Fisher for his good all-round performances on the pitch but also his unstinting support of the team environment.
That was also recognised as he was named as 1st XI Player of the Year by captain Ben Johns while Liam Carty received the 1st XI Bowler for a second successive season, having sealed that accolade in 2022.
The 1st XI Batter of the Year went the same way as it has done in eight of the last nine seasons as the captain received his annual award – only Jimmy Manning in 2018 broke the run of Ben’s since 2014.
A fine season for the 2nd XI saw both Tom Perry and Matt Taylor named as the Batter of the Year – Teeps for the first time while Matt follows up his 2015 and 2022 awards. Yannick de Mezeries Lepervanche took the bowling award as the teams’ leading wicket-taker while Eve O’Neill was named Player of the Year for her superb showings which led to her making her 1st XI debut at Sarisbury Athletic in September.
A player who has shown considerable improvement over the course of the season was Jack Austin, who hit two fifties as he averaged 61.00 in the 3rd XI this season – a record which pushed him up into the 2nd XI, where he would play a key part in their drive up the table. His performances this season, both on and off the pitch, saw him take the much coverted Most Improved Player of the Year trophy.
It was back-to-back Bowler of the Year awards in the 3rd XI for Paul Henry, which would have made him smile (possibly!) while skipper Sam Dempster was surprised when his speech was halted to be presented with the Batter gong. The ever-improving Oli Hibberd, who won 4th XI Bowler last year, stepped up to receive the 3rd XI Player of the Year this time around. A very bright future awaits.
The up-and-coming 4th XI saw young Abdul Karimi rewarded for some stellar performances with the bat while leading wicket-taker Shea Hallinan took home the bowler trophy. Skipper Tom Hoare, almost an ever present in the side and leading with side with great class and considerable patience, was presented with the 4th XI Player of the Year.
The Southern Stars side had another great season in the Hampshire League and enjoyed their experiences, playing alongside their friends and colleagues from Trojans CC. Their awards went to Sara Yasin as Batter of the Year, Olivia Pattison for the best bowler while Louise Bamford took the Coaches Player of the Year award for her all-rounder showings for the team.
The final award went to Ryan Lomax as the Border League Player of the Year.
The full list of the awards were:
Pete Lavelle Shield (Clubperson) – Steve Latimore
Yorkshireman Trophy – Ben Fisher
Most Improved Player – Jack Austin
300 SPCL Wickets – Mark Lavelle
1st XI Bowler – Liam Carty
1st XI Batter – Ben Johns
1st XI Player of the Year – Ben Fisher
3rd XI Bowler – Paul Henry
4th XI Bowler – Shea Hallinan
Ladies Batter – Sara Yasin
Border League Player of the Year – Ryan Lomax