22 January 2016
Caloundra cricket legend Shirley Haag has been named winner of the Suncorp Bank Bulls Masters Community Cricket Volunteer of the Year award.
Now in its second year, the search for Queensland’s Community Cricket Champion was launched by Suncorp Bank and the Bulls Masters in a bid to acknowledge the significant role volunteers play in ensuring cricket continues to thrive throughout the state.
Bulls Masters Chairman and former Australian cricket champion, Ian Healy, said he was thrilled to recognise and reward the efforts of such a deserving volunteer.
“The Bulls Masters was established for this very purpose, to give back to the local communities and help foster and develop cricket throughout Queensland,” Mr Healy said.
“Shirley has done an amazing job, and it’s very important that we support our hardworking and dedicated volunteers. Without their commitment and unwavering support, many of us would not be the cricket players we are today.”
Suncorp Bank Regional Manager for the Sunshine Coast, Andrew Kaye, said Shirley Haag encompassed all the qualities the initiative represented.
“Many of our country’s cricket legends started their career playing for local cricket clubs across Queensland. It is through the efforts of volunteers like Shirley the sport remains an intrinsic part of Australian culture,” Mr Kaye said.
A volunteer at the Caloundra Cricket Club for 41 years, Shirley said she loves the community spirit cricket creates and was honoured to accept such a wonderful award.
“I originally got involved with the Caloundra Cricket Club when my husband and I moved here from Ipswich. I would sit and watch him play for hours, and was welcomed by the friendly and inclusive culture of the club,” Mrs Haag said.
“Now, more than four decades later my children and grandchildren are involved in the club and we have made lifelong friends from all over Australia and New Zealand.”
Shirley, having just retired from her six-year position as secretary, could often be found in the canteen, cleaning the club, replacing wickets or mowing the fields, and was made a life member in 1992.
As winner of the Community Cricket Volunteer of the Year, Shirley received a $2,000 individual cash prize and $5,000 grant for the Caloundra Cricket Club and says the money will go towards furnishing the clubs new Elite Training Facility.
Suncorp Bank also announced Lyn Brown (Emerald Brothers Cricket Club), Grant Ledger (Nambour Cricket Club), Malcolm Campbell (Suburban Parks Cricket Club) and Gregory White (Wolston Park Centenary Cricket Club) as regional finalists. Each finalist received $500 and a $1,000 grant for their club.
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