Oswestry Cricket Club’s Women & Girls’ captain and coach, Naomi Payne, declared she is “chuffed to bits” after receiving the game’s top coaching accolade when she was named a National Winner of the ECB Coach of the Year 2022 alongside two fellow recipients.
Naomi, who was presented with her award at the England & Wales Cricket Board’s Coach Awards ceremony in Coventry on Saturday 26th November, had been shortlisted for national recognition after being named Cricket Shropshire’s Coach of the Year in November.
Hosted by the Sky Sports cricket commentator, Charles Dagnall, the event saw inspirational club cricket coaches – both male and female and from counties across England – recognised and rewarded for their commitment and passion in improving skills, participation and performance.
Judged by an independent panel of senior ECB coaches and administrators, Naomi’s efforts in growing the Oswestry Women & Girls’ section was highlighted by the panel, saying: “Naomi has single-handedly led the development of the Oswestry CC Women & Girls’ section, growing the squad and developing relationships with sponsors and funders. Her biggest impact is the number of youth players brought on during 2022. It is testament to Naomi’s hard work in improving skills and confidence of team members that the club’s Women & Girls team qualified for the Shropshire Cricket Board’s Women’s hard ball finals day in their inaugural hard ball season.”
Naomi said: “I had no idea this national award was coming. I simply thought I would be joining other county winners at an event celebrating the positive impact that coaches make in their clubs and communities. I am absolutely chuffed to bits.”
Club Chairman, Steve Adams, added: “We at Oswestry Cricket Club are very proud of Naomi’s achievements. Naomi’s cricket knowledge, drive and enthusiasm has created our thriving Women’s and Girl’s section. We very much look forward to supporting Naomi and team into next season and welcome any new players or support staff.”
Andrew Leggatt, who runs the Club’s Juniors section, was also shortlisted after receiving Cricket Shropshire’s Outstanding Contribution Award for Services to Coaching earlier this month. Naomi and Andrew joined more than 150 other guests of the ECB at the awards dinner at the University of Warwick’s impressive hotel and conference facility, The Slate, in Coventry.
Any females aged over 10 years who would like to experience women’s cricket can join indoor taster sessions in the New Year by emailing Naomi at firstname.lastname@example.org or message via the Club’s Facebook or Instagram pages.