Friday 28 September 2007 

Paul Horton Is Lancashire Player Of The Year 2007

Lancashire batsman Paul Horton has been rewarded for a magnificent season, being named the Thwaites Lancaster Bomber “Player of the Year” at tonight’s “Old Trafford 150th Anniversary and Player Awards Dinner”.

With Australian Brad Hodge on International duty at the start of the season, Horton was given an opportunity in the middle of the order; and following a string of strong performances was promoted to opening batsman when Hodge arrived. During Lancashire’s last fixture of the season, Paul passed the magic 1000 mark, finishing the season with 1034 Championship runs at an average of 49.23.

Cricket Manager Mike Watkinson and the winner of Lancashire’s inaugural “Player of the Year Award” in 1995 expressed his pride at Horton’s success; “Paul is another product of the successful youth system here at Lancashire. He has had to be patient and wait for his opportunity, but when it was presented at the beginning of the season, he grabbed it with both hands. ‘Horts’ has played outstanding Championship cricket this season, and in scoring over 1000 runs has been influential on the success of the side.”

Earlier in the evening, Red Rose Legend David Hughes announced that Steven Croft was the HS Admin “Young Player of the Year”.

2007 marked the arrival of Blackpool born Croft, who went onto score 772 runs in all competitions plus an additional 384 for Lancashire’s Second XI. With Andrew Flintoff regularly away with England commitments, Steven has emerged as the club’s future all-rounder and arguably the team’s best fielder.

The 22-year old Croft was in fact a double award winner, having also won the Yorkshire Bank “Champagne Moment of the Year” for his stunning outfield catch to dismiss Alex Loudon during Lancashire Lightning’s Pro40 win over Warwickshire at Edgbaston.

Commenting on Croft’s achievements, Watkinson said; “Steven is the first player from the Lancashire Academy to breakthrough into the senior ranks and make a significant impact across the board. He has acquitted himself well in all areas of the game, and with continual improvement has the potential to do very well for years to come.”

The Lancashire squad will now have some time off before meeting up again in December to prepare for the 2008 season.

© Lancashire CCC