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Player of the Year Awards 2014/15 - Tuesday 28th April 2015
Report by Tom Brooks, Pictures by Rob Craven
The awards kicked off with the April player of the month award.
 
The player of the month award is usually voted for by Trust members, however due to the fact the final game of April was only three days prior to the awards night, the unique decision was made for the Trust Board Members to vote on it for this month. In another unique event, the award went for the first time to two players – Adam Barrett and Cian Bolger – two players' who have formed a formidable partnership at the back for The Blues during our impressive seven straight wins.
 
 
 
 
The second award of the evening was for the Youth Team player of the year. The winner of the Youth Team Player of the Year is presented each year with the Tom Grace Memorial Shield. Tom was an avid Southend United Supporter and a junior member of the Trust who sadly passed away at the age of 15 in July 2007. It was decided by the Trust to rename the Youth Team Player of the Year Award the Tom Grace Memorial Shield in his memory.

As is tradition, The Trust welcomed Tom's family to the evening and Tom's Dad, Len, presented the award to the top 3 players of the Youth Team for the 2014/15 season:

 
 
2nd Runner Up: DANIEL MATSUZAKA

1st Runner Up: JOSH BEXON

Winner: FREDDIE GARD

 
 
 
 
Youth team coach Dave Huzzey joined in the presentation of the awards for Youth Team player of the year in Ricky Duncans absence. Dave was quick to highlight the impressive talent yet again coming through the Youth Team at SUFC and praised the Trust for their invaluable donations to the Youth Team once again. Emphasis was also placed on the significance of the new Elite League and the confirmation of Category 3 academy status, allowing our Youth Team to play higher calibre teams, enhancing their development further. Dave also added the importance of the new Under 21 squad that will be coming into effect for next season.
 
 
Special mention was then given to those 5 individuals who have travelled the maximum 8,084 miles with The Trust to support their team this season: Scott Barber, Alan Gifford, Lesley Hicks, Gaye Overall & Nicola Slater. Usually, the top travellers are presented with a prize or award for their efforts, however with one game (and we hope just one!) left to go, these will be given out at a later date.

The Top Junior Traveler for this season is Joe Hunter who has clocked up 1,848 Miles so far. Again, his award will be presented at a later date.

 
 
 
 
Next up was the Junior Blue's Player of the Year award, presented by Junior Blue Nathan Williams. This award went to top goal scorer for this campaign so far, Barry Corr.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Ryan Leonard then picked up the goal of the season award for his impressive strike Vs Dagenham & Redbridge in January. He pipped efforts by Michael Timlin (Vs Carlisle), David Worrall (Vs Bury) and a further Ryan Leonard strike (Vs Mansfield) to the accolade. This award is presented each year in the honour of Blues Fan Martin Cramner who sadly died at the age of 40. Martin was a lifelong Supporter of SUFC, one of the founder members of the Southend United Independent Supporters Club and was a Shrimpers Trust Life Member. He travelled all over the country to support the Blues. The Martin Cramner Goal of The Season award was presented by Martin's wife, Zoe Cramner.
 
 
 
The final award of the evening was the main player of the year award. The 5 nominees for this award, clips of whom had been shown throughout the night, were: Daniel Bentley, Barry Corr, Michael Timlin, David Worral & Ben Coker. In the end, the awards went to:
 
 
 
 
2nd Runner Up: Barry Corr

1st Runner Up: Michael Timlin

Winner: Daniel Bentley
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dave Penny presented this award and was then invited to say a few words. He spoke briefly to thank the fans for their tremendous support this campaign. He thanked the Trust for their donation to the medical equipment that the team uses and reiterated the importance of The Trust and the fans as a whole. The sense of belief that we would get a result at Morecambe could be heard in his voice and he was quick to impress upon us the part we can play as fans, and indeed have played, throughout this season.
 
When the presentations drew to a close, the players stuck around to speak with fans, sign autographs and pose for photographs. The players then departed, to prepare for what could be another momentous day in the history of Southend United Football club on Saturday!
 
The Trust would like to thank all it's Members that voted for this season's awards and for attending the awards evening.
 
Thanks also to the Players & Staff from both the 1st Team and Youth Team squads for attending and for SUFC and Sharon Munroe for the use of the Shrimpers Bar.

Special thanks to Scott Wallace of SX Sports Media & Film Production for putting the video footage together and for SX Sports for providing the trophies presented throught the evening.

A full set of photographes from the evening can be found on the Trust's Facebook page here.
Video footage of the awards evening will be available on this website in due course.
  
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