Olly named coach of the year

Published on: 31 Oct 2014

Oliver-Ralph

DOWNEND CC’s Olly Ralph has been named the ECB Young Coach of the Year for the South West.

The 23-year-old picked up the award for his work with Gloucestershire’s county and district teams and in local schools.

He said: “Winning the Gloucestershire young coach award was an achievement but to win it for the South West was even better. It came as a real shock but it is good to be rewarded for the hard work and effort you’ve put in over the last few years.”

Olly – who works for bowling machine manufacturers BOLA - was presented with his certificate at an awards day for all 27 winners from across the country at the ECB’s High Performance Centre at Loughborough.

The day consisted of a tour of England’s training HQ and coaching sessions with ex-international batsman Graeme Thorpe, spinner Peter Such, former Gloucestershire captain Chris Taylor and ECB bowling coach Kevin Shine.

Olly said: “It was a great experience to listen to England’s top coaches and gain tips and methods that they use themselves. It was also good to mix with the other young coaches.”

He was nominated by the Gloucestershire Cricket Board (GCB) for his outstanding work on a number of its programmes.

Olly is manager of the under 12 county team, coaches both the Bristol under 11 and under 15 squads and has worked extensively in schools. This year - working alongside fellow Bristol coach Colin Brunt - he took the Bristol under 15s on tour to Jersey.  This was the first time a district side

Olly also coaches youth teams at Downend, Bedminster and Bitton and he said that helping develop players like Callum Loud – who he has seen go from the under 12s to the first XI has been another highlight.

GCB projects and programmes manager Chris Munden said: “Olly has proved to be reliable, professional and enthusiastic in everything he has done for the board. His passion for cricket and helping young players improve is unquestioned and he is always prepared to go the extra mile without being asked.”

Earlier this year Olly spent two weeks coaching in Uganda as a volunteer with HIV/AIDS awareness and cricket development charity Cricket Without Boundaries.

His next aim is to win a place on the ECB’s Level 3 coaching course.

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