Monday, 3 September 2012
AWARDS 2012: Ballance sweeps prizes at dinner
Gary Ballance scooped three major awards last night at the Yorkshire CCC Players’ Association annual dinner which was held in conjunction with the 2012 Player Awards in the Long Room at Headingley Carnegie Stadium.
The left-handed batsman, who received his first team cap at Scarborough last week, walked off with the Yorkshire members’ Player-of-the-Year award as well as being voted the Players’ Player-of-the-Year and also receiving the Fielder-of-the-Year award.
Opener, Joe Root, also capped at Scarborough, was named Young Player-of-the-Year, while another talented batsman, Jack Leaning, who made his first team debut against Warwickshire in the Clydesdale Bank 40 League encounter with Warwickshire at North Marine Road, picked up the Academy Player-of-the-Year Award.
Players and cricket staff were present at the highly successful dinner which was compared by BBC Radio Leeds Yorkshire commentator, Dave Callaghan, who reports on all Yorkshire matches and does ball-by-ball commentary.
Filmed highlights of the current season, compiled by James Buttler, who also provided the commentary, were shown on the big screen and proved very popular with the audience.
Charlotte Evers, who chairs the Yorkshire CCC Supporters’ Association and is a representative on the Members’ Committee, presented Richard Pyrah with a specially signed scorecard of last season’s Roses match at Headingley Carnegie in which Richard scored 117, an innings recognised as one of the greatest in the club’s history. The scorecard is one of a limited edition produced by the Supporters’ Association and signed by all 12 Yorkshire players who took part in the match, Tim Bresnan replacing Iain Wardlaw in the side when the former was released by England. It was also Yorkshire’s 3,000th Championship game.
In a question-and-answer session led by Dave Callaghan, Yorkshire captain, Andrew Gale, referred to “the fantastic chase” against Gloucestershire at Scarborough last week when his side hit their 314 target with 16 balls to spare and he paid tribute to Anthony McGrath for his excellent unbeaten 76 which finished off the chase.
Andrew said it was immensely frustrating that 13 full days and almost 2,000 overs had already been lost to bad weather in the Championship this season and he would like to think that the side would have had a few more wins but for the rain. But they were now back in second place in the table and he was confident they would put everything into their last two matches and go over the line.
Referring to the t20 Finals Day in Cardiff, Andrew said it had been great to brush Sussex aside in the semi-finals but they had just fallen short against Hampshire in the final.
First team coach, Jason Gillespie, said his first sight of the squad when he got the job was on the pre-season tour of Barbados and he immediately saw a lot of talent which made him pretty excited and left him in no doubt that they would challenge most sides in county cricket.
Director of Professional Cricket, Martyn Moxon, said he was very happy with the overall picture but it was still a case of work in progress, particularly with the second team which was a very young side and contained five or six Academy players. Bad weather meant they had not played the amount of cricket he would have liked but the basic talent was there and it was up to the players and coaching staff to develop that talent so that Yorkshire could go on and become the leading side in the country. If they gained promotion in the Championship then he was determined that they would make a strong challenge to lift the title in the club’s 150th anniversary season next year.
Day 2, 2nd Investec Test close
England v New Zealand
England 1st Innings
337 for 7 (94 overs)
Root 104 (Maiden Test century) Bairstow 64