Northampton Saints grounds staff have been recognised for their outstanding work at Franklin’s Gardens over the last 12 months by being shortlisted for two prestigious awards.
Organised by the Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG), the awards acknowledge the passion, dedication and challenges faced by grounds staff across all levels of professional sport.
“My team have worked incredibly hard in challenging conditions to deliver the best possible pitches and practice facilities.”Andy Miller, head groundsman
The team, which is led by head groundsman Andy Miller, are one of just two nominees in the IOG Expert Professional RFU Grounds Team category for their work preparing Saints’ numerous playing surfaces.
Deputy head groundsman Ollie Deeming, age 22, is also nominated in the IOG Young Grounds Person of the Year category. Deeming has excelled in his role since starting at Saints 22 months ago.
“It’s very pleasing to be recognised for our work,” said Miller. “For us to be shortlisted is very encouraging for my team who have worked incredibly hard in challenging conditions to deliver the best possible pitches and practice facilities.
“I am particularly pleased for Ollie who has worked diligently since he arrived at the Gardens. He is hard-working, quick-to-learn and deserves to be honoured in this category.”
Commenting on the nominations, Saints chief executive Mark Darbon said: “Every team in the league envies our pitches and we are very lucky to have such a talented, hard-working ground staff looking after them.
“It comes as no surprise that Andy and his team have been nominated and I wish them all the very best at the awards ceremony.”
The winners will be announced on Wednesday 30 October in Birmingham.