The Edgbaston ground staff's incredible effort in 2022 was recognised at the Grounds Manager of the Year Awards.
Following a gruelling campaign that saw the square host 49 games delivering 65 match days including two or three games some days, Barwell and his staff were rewarded with the coveted Bernard Flack Memorial Trophy, which was shared by Gary Barwell (Edgbaston), Lee Fortis (The Kia Oval), Adrian Llong (Spitfire St Lawrence, Canterbury); Karl McDermott (Lord’s) and Andy Ward (Uptonsteel County Ground).
The award, named after the former Edgbaston groundsman, is decided by collating the pitch ratings from Match Referees for multi-day cricket over the course of the season – underlining the unlikely prospect of a five-way tie – and has only been shared once before in the its 50-year history.
In addition, Barwell earned a commendation for his one-day pitches as Headingley’s Andy Fogarty claimed that award for the first time.
ECB Pitch and Grounds Advisor, Andy Mackay, said: “It’s important to acknowledge the quality and consistency of our pitches and the awards winners fully deserve this recognition for their efforts over the summer.
“The quality of work from all ground staff, not just those who won awards, must also be recognised within the context of the heavy weight of fixtures and relentless training which puts considerable demands on the teams across the county network.
“Behind every pitch is a person and a group of individuals who consistently go above and beyond to deliver what the game needs, and they should feel rightly proud of their efforts.
“Every venue has again risen to the challenge admirably and delivered playing and practice facilities that have enabled the players to showcase the best of the game for the fans this summer.”
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