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Community cricket volunteers recognised

14 May 2018

Local cricket volunteers James Brennan, Brad Speering and Sean McAllister have been acknowledged for their outstanding work growing the sport in the Sydney Sixers catchment area with nominations for the NSW Community Sports Awards at Parliament House on June 21.

Distinguished Long Service - James Brennan

1987 Jim became the first Public Officer of the NJCA when the NJCA gained autonomy and he was appointed Zone Co-Ordinator when there was a third-tier level for players trying to break into representative cricket. Other functions include being a Junior Representative Selector for forty years. Jim was also a Representative Coach for 10 years with great success. For the last 12 years he has served as a selector with the Catholic Schools Central Zone selection trials for players advancing to the next level. In summary, Jim’s current involvement to cricket in Newcastle is 69 years, which includes 40 years as an officiating umpire. From 1976 and still current it is estimated that he has officiated at middle to late 1300 fixtures, plus approx. 120 primary and high school matches.

Sports Administrator of the Year – Brad Speering, South Coast Junior CA

Brad is the Treasurer of Gerringong CC and Board member of South Coast Junior CA. He has worked hard with his club to increase junior membership and he is the key driver behind the implementation of T20 Blast. He is the key positive lead person in the Association with the positive impact of T20 Blast to grow cricket in his region. Numbers went from 0 - 56 children in his club alone. Overall across the South Coast area there are now over 100 children playing this format in its first year. When Brad took over as Junior Secretary there were only 6 of our SCDCA clubs that had Junior teams. As at the end of the last season all 9 of SCDCA clubs now junior clubs. Brad is also a key lead on behalf of both his Club and Association with CNSW with the NSW Country Championships.

Young Coach of the Year – Sean McAllister – Thornleigh CC

Sean is a passionate cricketer who plays at rep level. He became involved in coaching this team because his sister wanted to play. There was not a local team for her age group at the time but Cricket NSW started promoting girls in sports and pushed for opportunities for girls to play locally. There ended up being two teams in Thornleigh and his sister joined one of these. He then offered to coach the train them because none of the parents could find time due to work commitments and he did not want them to miss out. He has led this group who were not cricketers before to aspire to higher levels of play and readily took on the mantle of leading them when no one else could.