Glen Chapple’s status as Lancashire’s first County Championship-winning captain for 77 years was given further recognition when he beat off stiff competition to retain the club’s player of the year title at a jubilant Old Trafford awards night.
Chapple seemed a little embarrassed to win the award, which is determined by the votes of members, for a record third time, after he had also retained the club’s Championship player of the year gong. “Cold hard facts say this should have gone to somebody else,” he said, magnanimously rather than ungraciously.
Gary Keedy and Kyle Hogg were the other obvious contenders, after outstanding seasons with the ball. But Chapple’s leadership, epitomised by his heroic hop-along performance after he suffered a hamstring injury in the title-clinching victory over Somerset at Taunton, made him a popular winner.
“His leadership is not about talking too much, it’s about doing,” said the Lancashire coach Peter Moores, who was also given a rousing reception from comfortably the biggest attendance for an awards night at Old Trafford.
Steven Croft was named one-day player of the year, and Karl Brown edged out Simon Kerrigan as the young (under-24) player of the year, after seizing the chance to establish himself in the first team.
Kerrigan claimed consolation with the champagne moment of the year award for the last of his nine wickets that snatched victory in the penultimate fixture of the summer against Hampshire in Aigburth with four minutes to spare.
Keedy had also been a strong contender for that award for his crucial run out to end Somerset’s second innings in Taunton, the first direct hit of his career. But he has been around long enough to reflect stoically that this just wasn’t his night.
There were two other big winners. Stephen Moore was awarded his county cap by the Lancashire chairman Michael Cairns after playing a key role in the Championship triumph with an especially strong finish to his second season with the county, and the former captain Mark Chilton marked his retirement with an unexpected acoustic performance that even earned an encore. “Worse than facing fast bowling,” he joked. “But you’ve got make the most of it, haven’t you?”