Friday saw the annual Presentation Awards Night for our 1st and Reserves Senior Men’s squads – and now that the fogginess has cleared from our heads, we’re able to let you know who won what – and some of the speeches made by the relevant Age Group Management teams…

The Reserves were first up and as Wayne explained to the audience, finishing 4th felt a little deflating as we were told that they’d only lost four games all season. With some new additions and a renewed focus on discipline and work-rate, there’s every reason to believe we can do better next campaign and that’s we’ll be looking doing from that first pre-season training sesssion. The winners for the 2022-2023 Reserves Team Awards were as follows:

Reserve Team Management Player of the Year

Chris Pomfret

Reserves Team Players Player of the Year

Alex Gates

Reserve Team Most Improved Player of the Year

Jude Rawden

Then it was the turn of the 1st team and as Tommo, Dave and Damo took to the stage, they were right with everything they said. There had been games where we had been the better team but still lost by the odd goal and as the season progressed, there was really dark clouds of relegation hanging over our heads at times. But the lads stuck to it and with such a young squad, they managed to not only pull themselves out of it – but we went a fantastic run that even saw us claim a 2-2 draw against the Champions Rochdale Sacred Heart – when they hadn’t conceded at all in the 720 minutes prior to coming to The County Ground!

The quality is there. The experience is coming. And with some top signings hopefully being made in the summer, we will be looking to come out again in 2023-2024 looking to get back to those upper echelons of the league table. But for now, it was about what’s been – and the winners of our 1st team Awards for 2022-2023 were as follows:

1st Team Management Player of the Year

Ben Tomlinson

1st Team Players Player of the Year

Jack Hodgkinson

1st Team Most Improved Player of the Year

Liam Hulme

There was also the annual Bolton County 1st Team Supporters Player Award – and this year it was given to Jonathon Smalley – who unfortunately couldn’t be with us so it was gratefully collected by  Tom Axon-Smith and as the photos started being taken, the thoughts turned to how good a party this was going to be…

A massive thanks to those of you that came out tonight and Houghie was right when he reminded us all – this is a Club and not individual teams – so we’ll be looking for a lot more cohesion and movement across all of the Senior Section teams next season and if we all play to our full capability, 2023-2024 could be a really successful one in the history of Bolton County FC.

The players were reminded that pre-season starts on 1st July so there’s time to party – and then it’s time to get back to some serious work as we prepare to go again..

We’ll see you all again in July…