Ahead of the Grounds Managers’ Awards held by the ECB today, the Club’s Director of Cricket, Paul Downton, and Men’s Head Coach, Matt Walker, have thanked Kent Cricket’s Ground Staff for their excellent work across the 2021 season.
Based at The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence and led by Adrian Llong, Kent Cricket’s Head of Grounds, the Club’s Ground Staff manage playing areas at both Canterbury and The County Ground, Beckenham – both pitches received top marks from the ECB’s Match Referees across the season.
Thanking Adrian and his staff for their hard work, Paul Downton was quick to mention our Ground Staff’s enthusiasm and dedication throughout 2021.
“Both ‘Llongy’ and the rest of the lads have been fantastic this season”, he said.
“The pitch marks that we are getting now are off the scale – a lot of the cricket that we’re producing now is down to them. I know how much attention to detail they pay and how much they care about our grounds – it’s a real testament to the team.”
Kent’s Men’s Head Coach, Matt Walker, was similarly impressed with the Club’s Ground Staff this season.
“I want to say a massive thank you to Llongy and the rest of the team for all of their hard work.
“I don’t remember Canterbury being quite as challenging as it has been across this season in term of grounds management. They’ve dealt with things so brilliantly and worked so hard to get things right this year.
“Llongy and his team have worked tirelessly to get things right – I know how desperate they are to improve this ground and to try and make the wickets as good as possible. Since they’ve taken that challenge on, they’ve achieved it.
Thanking Adrian directly, Walker said: “I think you’re a massively valuable part of our team and you’re on board with everything that we’re trying to do – without you, nothing really works – your hard work doesn’t go unnoticed.
“The hours you put in are something to behold, I want to thank you on behalf of both myself and the team – we couldn’t do what we do without you. We’re all looking forward to next season.”
Kent’s Ground Staff are already working hard to continue to improve playing surfaces across the venues that are under the Club’s direct control.
Work has already started on improving drainage at The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence and on ensuring that pitches are up to the Ground Staff’s high standards heading into 2021.
Josh Marden, who has been a part of Adrian’s team at The Spitfire Ground for a number of seasons, has been appointed as Lead Groundsperson at The County Ground, Beckenham, and will now manage the surface at Kent Cricket’s home in Metropolitan Kent.
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