Duffield club is thriving

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PRESENTATIONS made at the Annual General Meeting of Duffield Squash & Racketball Club show that the Duffield club is thriving and, in particular, has a strong future with awards made to several talented and dedicated youngsters.

In announcing the coveted Thompson Salver award, given annually to a member for their voluntary work at the club, President Russell Moore said that many members had come under consideration before declaring Lesley Sturgess a most worthy recipient.

Lesley, an international player and currently Derbyshire over 40s ladies champion, is a club coach and was awarded the salver for her “prodigious and selfless offers of help in all areas of the club, all outside of her normal duties.”

Lesley herself went on to present her own Junior Volunteer of the Year award.

The first winner of this new award was Ben Harvey who has assisted at the Saturday coaching sessions for youngsters for the last two years, rarely missing a week.

“Even though he plays in tournaments held at the club, he also helps out, and he is always on hand to help the younger children at the club ,” said Lesley.

The Barrie Anderson Junior Award, presented by club chairman Mike Taylor in memory of a popular club member, went to Wilf Shorrock for “setting a great example to other juniors in both his achievements and personal contributions.”

Wilf played 19 times for the men’s teams over the last 12 months and earned promotion to the club’s Premier League for the first time. He also fits in his squash amongst other activities: he plays off a golf handicap of five, opens the batting for senior team at Quarndon CC, plays in the Derby Under-17 Football League for Allestree Juniors and is keen on fitness training and working out in the gym.

Two players shared the Roy Squires Club Player of the Year Award. Roy Squires, the club’s Treasurer, awarded the trophy to Chris Alcock and Steve Simms. Chris, a winner of this award two years ago, had “improved his playing standard yet again, and his commitment to the club in turning out for both squash and racketball matches, summer or winter, is of the highest order.” Steve shares the award with Chris for “a remarkable improvement to his standard of play,” rising to the Premier Division of the club leagues and winning 10 of his 15 matches in the Derbyshire Leagues over the last 12 months.

The Ager Family Junior Merit Award, presented to the most improved junior or to a junior making a notable contribution to the club either on or off the court, also had shared recipients: Tom Blenkinsop and Max Gilbert. Max has “improved enormously with both his game and attitude to it,” representing the club as the number one player in the Sheffield & District League Junior competition, leading the team to second place.

Max also has a black belt at Tae Kwon-do and plays football for Belper Sports.

He represented Derbyshire at Under-11 and Under-13 level, played in several rounds of the Junior Grand Prix and played at Number Four in the Sheffield & District Junior League. He also plays football for Duffield Dynamos.