PLYMPTON cricketer Amara Carr will be getting some tips from the top today (Monday) after being named ECB young coach of the year.
Her prize is a day at a coaching conference at the National Performance Centre with the specialists who look after the England Test team.
Carr, who is 22, started coaching when she was 16 and has enjoyed a dual career ever since.
As a player she has been part of England squads since 2010, most recently as part of the Development squad.
Last winter Carr visited the West Indies with the Club Cricket Conference.
During the domestic season that ended last month, Carr was a member of the Western Storm squad based at Taunton that played in the inaugural Kia Ladies Super League.
As a coach she has coached at club, university, county and England youth level.
In her spare time Carr has mentored young players and encouraged more girls and ladies to have a go at cricket.
Carr learned she had won the award at the NatWest-sponsored ECB Oscas – Outstanding Services to Cricket Awards – at Lord’s recently.
Winning the award completed a unique family double as older brother James won it in 2009. And Alex Carr, another brother, has been shortlisted for the award but didn’t’ win it.
Carr who recently graduated from the University of Exeter with a degree in sports science, has no idea who nominated her for the award.
What Carr does know is she will be at Loughborough University today for a coaching workshop with four of the England Test team’s specialist coaches.
“Graham Thorpe for batting, Peter Such is the spin-bowling coach, Chris Taylor is the fielding specialist and Kevin Shine looks after the fast bowlers,” said Carr.
“They are the lead coaches for England so it should be really informative.”
After three years studying for her degree, Carr is off to New Zealand before Christmas to go travelling.
She will be back next Spring though to resume her cricket career.
“There will be plenty of work to do as I want to keep figuring in the Western Storm squad and will need to put in performances.”
Now in their 14th year, the NatWest OSCAs form an integral part the ECB’s volunteering programmes, which give cricket clubs advice on recruiting, training and rewarding volunteers.
Carr joins a Devon roll of honour that includes not just her brother, but coach Jon Mears (2005), 15, umpire David Moseby and groundsman Phil Spong (both 2007), the late Richard Butler (2009) and volunteer Jock Spry (2015).
Matt Theedom, the cricket development manager for Devon, said: “The NatWest OSCAs are a way of highlighting and rewarding the contributions volunteers make to grassroots cricket.
“The sport relies on the incredible amount of work volunteers put in at their clubs every year.
“They are the reason we all have cricket clubs to play at and enjoy. The game simply wouldn’t function without them.”