The curtain to the 2022 season was brought down at Loperwood Park on Friday night and a great evening was had by all as the club celebrated another stellar season of success across all levels – from the 1st XIs return to Lord’s and a fine third place league finish to the 2nd XI winning Hampshire Division 3 South, the 4th XI producing some great displays with a firm mix of youth and vast experience while the 3rd XI endured a more difficult time of it.

There was also celebration of the Southern Stars Women’s team that was created alongside Trojans CC to give many talented young women the opportunity to play ‘hard-ball’ cricket for the first time and whilst results may not have gone their way, the enjoyment and cameraderie that was built up was a joy to behold.

The major winners on the night were retiring first XI captain Mark Lavelle, who lifted his Dad’s award – the Pete Lavelle Shield – for Club Person of the Year, becoming the fourth player in Calmore history to receive the award more than once, having won the award in 2016 – following Teddy Rolfe (1971 & 1982), Richard Isaacs (1995 & 2020) and Keith Woodhall (1996, 2007 & 2013).

Mark received the award for his considerable hard work in captaining the first XI for a record eight seasons – no captain has led the first XI in the league era for longer and it is the longest 1st XI reign since Walter Maton’s 11-year stint after WWII.  He led his side to back-to-back league titles in 2016 and 2017 and paved the way for two incredible appearances at the Home of Cricket in the final of the National Village Cup, winning the trophy in 2021.

However, it is not just his on field achievements that saw him received the accolade, the most prized club award since its inception in 1969, but the work that Mark puts in off the field too.  He has been front and centre of the club for a number of years, helping in selection of the other teams, not just the first XI and his considerable graft in making the club the best it can be has set him apart.  He was presented with the award by his father Pete and long time 1st XI player Mike West and a received a rapturous ovation from the room.

On what was a breakthrough year for him, Liam Carty walked away with three trophies on the night, including the Yorkshireman Trophy – presented in honour of Alan, the long distance Calmore supporter who resides in Rotherham and comes down every weekend to watch – and also the Most Improved Player trophy.  You can read more on this here (coming shortly).

There were plenty of awards given out including yet another for Ben Johns – on his 24th birthday – who received the 1st XI batter of the year trophy for the seventh time in eight completed seasons (only missing out in 2018) while Ben Fisher became the eighth different winner of the Captain’s Player of the Year under Mark’s leadership, showing the depth of character and drive within the team.

Matt Taylor rightly won the 2nd XI batter of the year award following his incredible year of 885 league runs while Ryan Lomax, with his 25 wickets, claimed the bowling award.  Michael Cook took the Captain’s Player of the Year for scoring over 600 runs and taking 18 dismissals behind the stumps.

The Southern Stars Women’s team were in good attendance for their first presentation evening and the Coaches’ Player of the Year went to captain Amelia Vann as the two coaches from the two clubs agreed that her performances both individually and as the side’s leader were more than deserving of her award.  The batter of the season trophy was taken by Aarushe Singh who scored 121 runs in her four innings and recorded a fine half-century against Ryde while Mary Ashenden’s five wickets for the team got her the bowling.

A tough year for the 3rd XI but Jack Austin stood out with the bat while Paul Henry would have been delighted to have claimed the bowling award for his 33 league scalps – the highest in the division despite their impending relegation.  Roy Walton took the Captain’s Player of the Year.

Meanwhile, in the 4th XI, it was a sign of a great future – Hampshire player Ella Cruise Cotter took the Captain’s Player of the Year award home while Stewart Abbott and a thrilled Oli Hibberd claimed the individual trophies.

And finally, Matt Morgan’s 14 wickets in the successful Border League season saw him take him the Player of the Year.

The full list of awards on the night were:
‘PETER LAVELLE SHIELD’ for CLUB PERSON of the YEAR 2022: Mark Lavelle

Captain’s Player of the Year: Ben Fisher
Batter of the Year: Ben Johns
Bowler of the Year: Liam Carty

Captain’s Player of the Year: Michael Cook
Batter of the Year: Matt Taylor
Bowler of the Year: Ryan Lomax

Coaches’ Player of the Year: Amelia Vann
Batter of the Year: Aarushe Singh
Bowler of the Year: Mary Ashenden

Captain’s Player of the Year: Roy Walton
Batter of the Year: Jack Austin
Bowler of the Year: Paul Henry

Captain’s Player of the Year: Ella Cruise Cotter
Batter of the Year: Stewart Abbott
Bowler of the Year: Oli Hibberd

Player of the Year: Matt Morgan