GENEROUS tributes have been paid Devon Cricket League chairman Stuart Munday following his death on Sunday.
Munday, who was 72, battled cancer for a number of years. His condition worsened around six months ago and he died at home in Plympton.
During a long business career Munday owned sports shops in Plymouth, ran a bookmakers, acted as a management consultant and started a successful Spanish property company.
Lifelong friend Jack Davey said when Munday walked into any room it was impossible to ignore him.
“He had an opinion on anything and everything to do with cricket and didn't mind sharing them with everyone,” said Davey.
Davey, who had a 15-yea r professional career with Gloucestershire, met Munday at Tavistock Grammar School when aged 11, which was the start of a lifelong friendship.
Davey, who will be delivering the eulogy at Munday's funeral, said his friend was a larger-than-life character with a happy knack of getting jobs done.
“There were two things Stuart was exceptionally good at” raising money and getting jobs done,” said Davey.
“Stuart's methods were unorthodox and unusual at times and would not have worked for most people.
“But he was a do-er and got results for everything he was involved in. that could be Tavistock Cricket Club - he raised tens of thousands of pounds for them - the Devon Lions and Devon CCC and the Devon Cricket League.
“There was hardly a job he didn't do at Tavistock Cricket Club, where he captained both teams and was president and chairman.
“The only job he wasn't allowed to do was groundsman after he measured the pitch out incorrectly.”
Davey said Munday took charge of the pitch markings after they were washed away by overnight rain ahead of a big game that afternoon.
“It was Tavistock's President's Game and David Shepherd was coming down from Bristol with me to play,” said Davey.
“Everyone remembers Shep the umpire as a well-built figure, well he was much the same as a player.
“He never looked to run threes - two was quite enough for him!
“Stuart had re-marked the pitch for the game and accidentally added an extra yard between the creases.
“Shep wasn't happy when he was run-out and blamed Stuart for making the pitch too long.
“The banter between them went on for years afterwards.”
Among Munday’s money-making ventures for Tavistock were first-day stamp covers to celebrate the clubs 150th anniversary.
“He got the Marquis of Tavistock to sign each one, there were more than a hundred of them, and sold them off for twenty quid each,” said Davey.
Jim Wood, the outgoing chairman of the Devon Cricket Board, worked closely with Munday for many years.
Wood said Munday was unconventional but effective and always had one thing at heart.
“Stuart wanted what was best for cricket and saw the game in Devon as one entity,” said Wood.
“Clubs, the league, the county team, youth sides - they were all just as important to Stuart. He saw them as ingredients in one big pie.
“He got things done and kept getting them done, even if his methods were unconventional.
“He was a remarkable character and just thinking about him brings a smile to my face.”
After a long cricket career with Tavistock that began in the early 1960s, Munday became chairman and later president of the club.
He turned to cricket management in 2010, joining the Devon League executive as vice-chairman, and took the top job in 2012 when Joe Clowes resigned.
Stuart met wife Wendy through work and the couple recently celebrated their 41st wedding anniversary. They have a daughter, Zoë, and grandchildren.