Champion cricketers awarded: PHOTOS

The Eden Cricket Club held its annual presentation night at the Great Southern Inn on Friday, with all grades awarded on the night.

Mark Spink and Matthew Bell dominated awards for the premiership-winning A Grade side, sweeping the batting and bowling awards respectively, with Tyrone Thomas taking out the player of the finals, and Toby Timms scooping up the fielding prize.

Club president Drew Mudaliar and Spink, who was also named Most Valuable Player, were full of praise for young skipper Reece Wheeler, who pulled the side out of a late-season slump to lead them to the title.

Spink said that past premiership-winning captains, including himself, had enjoyed far easy roads to success.

Wheeler said it was humbling to hear those words from a man he looked up to while he was coming through the grades, and said the win takes on added significance.

“I’ve won premierships with these boys before, but this one definitely means the most,” Wheeler said.

“I’m just so happy I got to do it with such a great bunch of guys.”

But perhaps the biggest award of the night came outside the top grade, with veteran bowler Stu Cassie becoming just the fourth life member of the club in recognition of his efforts over the years, which has included leading the B Grade side in more recent times.

Cassie, who also completed a clean sweep of the B Grade bowling awards, was lost for words when accepting his life membership jacket.

“I just want to thank everyone; this is just such an honour,” he said.

Other B Grade honours went to Sean Smith (MVP and best batting average), Phil Cassie (highest batting aggregate), and wicketkeeper Ian Smith (fielding award).

Toby Linehan was the C Grade standout, taking out the MVP and bowling awards, with both batting awards going to Corey Curtis, the fielding award to Harrison Baker, and Luke Grewar named most improved player.

In other honours handed out on Friday, Ian Trotter was named clubperson of the year, Corey Spink the young cricketer of the year, and Patrick Kearney the most improved seniors player.

Club members also thanked Mudaliar and Steve Mitchell for their efforts with junior sides this season.

In a surprising but welcome result for the club, 25 youngsters participated in the under 10s competition; a far cry from the days of struggling to put together a team.

Players from Mallacoota, who joined the club to help put sides on the field, also received a rousing hand of thanks for their dedication in travelling up to play each weekend.

Prizes including a signed and framed Michael Hussey print, donated by the Commonwealth Bank, were part of a raffle on the night.

CBA Eden branch manager Tammie Bastian also presented Mudaliar with training equipment for the club's junior sides at the bank on Friday.

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