The annual cricket awards for the 2019/20 cricket season were held online (Webex) last Friday night, held over since the season’s end in the forlorn hope that we could get together to properly celebrate the last season’s successes as COVID-19 restrictions might have been eased.
There were first time winners of the club champion awards, which recognises the best player in the 1st XI, with Elly Donald taking out the women’s title and Blake Thomson named the Paul Sheahan Club Champion. Elly had an outstanding all-round season, which comprises both a T20 and one-day competitions, making 516 runs @ 20.64 that included two half centuries with a top score of 70 in a T20 v Carlton Brunswick, plus the taking of 40 wickets @ 17.42 with a best of 6/41 v Prahran.
Blake amassed 719 runs @ 59.9 batting mainly at the top of the order, making two centuries; a match winning 108 v St Kilda and 101no v Frankston Peninsula helping set up a declaration in what turned out to be a critical outright win.
The Brian Watson Memorial Award that recognises the ‘most outstanding performance by an MCC Cricketer during the season went to Seb Gotch who made back to back Sheffield Shield centuries for Victoria, including his maiden first-class century v NSW (102) and followed up with an unbeaten century against Queensland (100 n.o.).
In the Players’ MVP Trophy award, voted on a 3,2,1 basis by each player in each grade every round, the women’s was taken out by Hasrat Gill by half a vote. Hasrat received 31.5 votes after making 366 runs @ 28.15 and taking 27 wickets @ 13.41 in both the 1sts and 2nds, winning by just half a vote over Elly Donald and Amy Vine.
Kieran Elliott took out the men’s MVP by the same narrow margin, his 50 wicket @ 12.4 and 207 runs @ 29.5 season gaining 18.5 votes to edge out 3rd XI captain Will Ryan.
Chelsea Wemyss claimed the women’s Shield (3rds) MVP trophy making 229 runs @ 15.26 and taking 9 wkts @ 30.22.
The Youth Cricketer of the Year awards, sponsored by the MCC XXIX Club, went to Ella Hayward and Fergus O’Neill. Both played significant roles in their respective 1st XIs, as well as representing their state at national under age championships. Ella made 257 runs @ 28.55 in the middle order and her off-spinners claimed 18 wickets @ 32.0. Fergus had a brilliant 1st XI debut season, taking 23 wickets @ 22.2 with his fast-mediums, and added a handy 232 runs @ 13.3 His season included a remarkable best of 6/25, including a hat-trick, in the round 7 match against Monash Tigers.
Anna O’Donnell was awarded the Best Club Person trophy. Our inaugural 1st XI captain and still a valuable 1st XI contributor, Anna has regularly demonstrated great club person qualities on and off the field. Notably, in the off season last year, she set up a female MCC Academy program. Whilst there was assistance from several players, coaches and volunteers, Anna was the driving force behind the program that has already produced a number of graduates who have joined our playing ranks.
MCC Club XI Players’ of the Season were Tom Mellick (126 runs @ 10 & 20 wickets @ 9.95) for MCC 1 for the second successive season, and John Jackson 147 runs @ 24.5 for MCC 2.
Outstanding performers in finals matches were acknowledged (see table below).
To recap MCC people recognised at Cricket Victoria’s Premier Cricket Awards night held in April:
MCC Awards Honour Roll
MCC Club Champions
Elly Donald and Blake Thomson
MCC Best Club Person
Brian Watson Memorial Award
MCC XXIX Club Award (best young players)
Ella Hayward and Fergus O’Neill
Players’ Most Valuable Players
Hasrat Gill and Kieran Elliott
Women’s 3rds MVP
Player of the Women’s 2nds T20 Semi-final
Charli Killeen – 54 (53 balls)
Player of the Women’s 2nds OD Semi-final
Clem Ryan-Fuller - 49 and 2/8 (9 overs)
Player of the Men’s 4th XI Quarter-final
Trent Thompson - 5/34 (19 overs)
Player of the Men’s 2nd XI Quarter-final
Jackson Koop – 6/50 inc a hat-trick & 37 no
Player of the Men’s 1st XI Qualifying final
Sam Harper - 122 no