Auckland Cricket celebrated the 2018/19 season with Thursday night’s Cricketer of the Year Awards, highlighting notable performances across school, club and representative cricket during the past summer.
Players, umpires, volunteers, administrators and sponsors from clubs across the city came together for a night of festivities – despite the weather.
Special guest Ian Healy shared some of his experiences in the world of cricket. And the standout players, coaches, and volunteers got their moment to receive their accolades.
Auckland Aces First-Class Debuts:
#520 – Graeme Beghin vs Wellington at the Basin Reserve, 10 October 2018
#521 – Will Somerville vs Wellington at the Basin Reserve, 10 October 2018
#522 – William O’Donnell vs Otago at University of Otago Oval, 17 March 2019
Auckland Hearts Debuts:
#261 – Tahlia Wilson vs Canterbury at Lincoln No. 3, 26 October 2018
#262 – Skye Bowden vs Central Districts at the Bert Sutcliffe Oval, 28 October 2018
#263 – Jesse Prasad vs Canterbury at the Nursery Ground, Hagley Park, 17 November 2018
#264 – Tariel Lamb vs Canterbury at the Nursery Ground, Hagley Park, 17 November 2018
#265 – Amie Hucker vs Wellington at Colin Maiden Park, 2 March 2018
#275 Will Somerville vs Pakistan at Sheik Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi, 3 December 2018
Representative Coach of the Year
Lauren Down & Arlene Kelly
Winner: Rob Nicol
It’s been a standout year for Auckland’s age-group teams, and none moreso than the Under-19 men’s team coached by Rob Nicol. In his first year as a coach, Rob set about building a side that thrived under pressure and consistently performed with the ball. Taking a novel approach to his coaching, Rob got results as the Under-19s took out their national tournament in Lincoln last December. Representative Coach of the year – Rob Nicol.
Batsman of the Year – Women
Winner: Lauren Down
Lauren Down has moved from strength to strength this season for the Auckland Hearts. She scored 341 runs in the Hallyburton-Johnstone Shield at an average of 37.88, including two half centuries and her maiden ton against Otago. She finished her season with an 86 and an 82 with the New Zealand Development XI.
Batsman of the Year – Men
Winner: Glenn Phillips
This season saw a change in Glenn Phillips as a batsman, transitioning from short-form specialist to top of the Auckland four-day batting rankings. He finished the Plunket Shield as top run-scorer, making 610 at the phenomenal average of 76.25. Glenn often stepped up when the team needed a cool head and someone to guide the innings. This didn’t come at a cost to his limited-overs play – when representing NZ A against Pakistan A he had a T20 average of 63.
Bowler of the Year – Women
Winner: Holly Huddleston
This is the second year in a row for Holly Huddleston, who continues to be a force for the Hearts with ball in hand. Holly picked up 17 wickets in the Hallyburton Johnstone Shield at an average of just 15.88, and once more showed herself to be the go-to bowler when her side needed a breakthrough. Spearheading an often-young bowling attack, Holly’s experience and combative attitude regularly produces results under pressure.
Bowler of the Year – Men
Winner: Will Somerville
In his first year with the Auckland Aces, Will Somerville has had a season to remember. Topping the ladder with 25 scalps in the Plunket Shield, Will picked up wickets in every innings he was thrown the ball. This was capped off with a call-up to the NZ test team against Pakistan, where he took seven wickets on debut.
Auckland Cricket Young Cricketer of the Year
Winner: Glenn Phillips
This is not Glenn’s first time winning this award, and indeed it’s hard to believe he still qualifies as a young cricketer – not just because of how long he’s been around. Glenn’s maturity as a player belies his age, particularly his growth this season as a batsman. And along with his consistently good glovework in the Burger King Super Smash, he’s also shaping up nicely as a bowler as well.
Auckland Umpire of the Year
Winner: Chris Brown
Chris has won this award three years in a row, as he continues to produce outstanding work at domestic and international level. This was also recognised at last month’s New Zealand Cricket Awards where Chris was named Umpire of the Year.
International Cricketer of the Year
Winner: Jeet Raval
This year has been onwards and upwards for Jeet Raval in the New Zealand Test side. Playing in every test this season, he averaged 51.6 at home and 35.36 overall. Jeet started the season as part of the side which defeated Pakistan away for the first time in 49 years, and finished it with his maiden test century, scoring 132 against Bangladesh in Hamilton. A player whose work ethic and dedication can’t be called into question, and this season those qualities have shone through.
Secondary Schoolgirls Players’ Player
Anyone who has seen Fran Jonas on the field knows what a talent she is. Playing for Baradene College she has showcased both her skill as a left-arm spinner and as an opening batsman. This season Fran represented Auckland at under-15, under-21, and Hearts A level, and continually impresses with her hard work on and off the pitch.
Secondary Schoolboys Players’ Player
Auckland Grammar 1st XI captain Olly white has had an impressive season with the bat, scoring 502 runs in the Premier Schoolboys competition at an average of 62.75 and with a season high score of 120. As a left-arm bowler he picked up 4 /13 against Rosmini College. Olly capped off his season when he was selected to play for the NZ Maori Schoolboys against the Governor General’s XI.
Women’s Club Player of the Year
Winner: Lagi Otila Telea
Papatoetoe’s Lagi Otila Telea has been a consistent all-round performer for her side this season, after winning the ‘Most Improved Player’ in 2016/17, she was amongst the top 10 players overall for batting and bowling in both the Prichard Cup and Pearl Dawson Trophy. A stalwart of the Papatoetoe team, Lagi’s best bowling figures of the season saw her take three for seven, and with the bat she made 334 runs with a high score of 75 not out. Beyond Pap Rec, she continued to represent Samoa Women in the Northern Premier League this season
Men’s Club Player of the Year
Winner: Tendai Chitongo
Looking at the Men’s Premier bowling rankings this year, and Tendai Chitongo is head-and-shoulders above the rest. With 62 wickets, three five-wicket bags, two ten wicket matches and best bowling figures of 3 wickets for 4 runs. Add in his batting in North Shore’s lower order you could run through Tendai’s stats for quite a while. A true club man, he’s an ever-present figure at Devonport Domain, as an administrator and junior coach.
Laurie Schnauer Cup – Player’s Player
Winner: Michael Barry
Michael Barry has been a consistent presence and performer throughout the 2018/19 club season. He was the second-highest run scorer in the Hedley Howarth Championship, with 465 runs, including two fifties, two centuries, and a high score of 137 not out. Beyond this, Baz is widely known as a great competitor and teammate, who is never short of a joke (most of them terrible).
Carson Cup – Volunteer of the Year
Winner: Dave Simmons
Dave – known to all as Chalky – is a stalwart of Suburbs New Lynn and makes enormous contributions as a volunteer. He’s actually won the cup before – in 1965! Over five decades later, he’s still as involved with cricket in Auckland as ever.
Chalky is on the Suburbs New Lynn Management Committee, and is always happy to share his wisdom, as anyone who gets him started on the subject of T20 cricket will soon find out.
This is a useful trait, given another of his volunteer roles – barman at the clubrooms three nights a week. And because that doesn’t keep him busy enough, Chalky is also the ground liaison officer, working with the council groundsman.
Dave Simmons has been an integral part of Suburbs New Lynn for more than 20 years. As an ex-schoolteacher his mentorship of young players as they enter the senior club has helped guide the way for many, and it is hard to imagine a more worthy recipient of the Carson Cup.
Simmonds & Osborne Shield – Club of The Year
The Simmonds and Osborne Shield is the symbol of club supremacy in Auckland. Dating back over a hundred years, it rewards the club that has performed best across all grades at every age level. Every club has their team performances from Premier to junior cricket assessed to find the overall winner.
Winner: Howick Pakuranga Cricket Club
Howick Pakuranga has been a force to be reckoned with this year – from their Year 7 ‘Williamson’ mid-week side who won their post-Christmas competition all the way to the Premier Men’s side who won two championships and reached the semi-finals of a third. Howick Pakuranga attracts players and supporters not just with successful teams, but also with a club atmosphere that’s friendly and welcoming. For the second year in a row, the Simmonds and Osborne Shield winner is Howick Pakuranga Cricket Club.
Special Achievement Awards
It’s always impressive to bring up a century. But to bring up a century of Auckland representative caps is another thing entirely. On 17 February 2019, Katie Perkins played her 100th one-day match for the Auckland Hearts, becoming the fourth player to reach that milestone.
Katie made her debut for Auckland on 3 January 2007 against Otago at Carisbrook, in what was then the State League.
In her now 101 matches, Katie has scored 2194 runs, reached a high score of 100 not out (twice), made 13 fifties and taken 44 catches.
In her time at the Hearts, Katie has also bowled 13 overs, 12 of which were in 2007. The most recent was a solitary over in 2014.
She has seen four competition name changes, reached seven finals, and helped win the national one-day title four times.
Katie Perkins brings to the team not just her skill and her indomitable spirit, but also her sense of community. In the 2018/19 season, Katie ran food drives at every Hearts’ home T20 match and organised for the team’s end-of-season function to raise money for charity.
Katie is a role model in every sense of the word, a well-loved and extremely valuable member of the Auckland Cricket family on and off the field.
We offer Katie our most fervent congratulations on reaching 100 games, and hope to see her play many more.
Auckland Cricketer of the Year
Winner: Will Somerville
Peter Jackson couldn’t have scripted it better – the journeyman cricketer who returns from Australia to take one more shot at achieving his childhood dream. After joining a new team, he establishes himself not just as a talented player prepared to put in the hard yards, but also one of the nicest guys around. And just a few months later, he’s the second-oldest debutant in New Zealand Test history, part of a historic series win.
There’s plenty of words we could use to describe Will Somerville’s first season with Auckland. But none would be as profound, or as moving, as Will’s own words the day after he received his international callup.
“My family,” he said, “have made a lot of sacrifices to come here and to support me. My Dad’s always said my career is a lesson in persistence, so that’s something I’ve held onto, kept persisting and trying to get better.
“It does mean a hell of a lot – it’s more than just a game of cricket in a way. And to get it this late makes it sweeter.”
Auckland cricketer of the year – Will Somerville.
Image Credit: Photosport.co.nz