Stalwart ‘surprised’ by Cricket honour

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When Peter Cameron attended an Otago Cricket meeting in 1969, it marked the start of a lifelong involvement in the sport.

At a presentation in Dunedin last month, Cameron was made a life member of the association, one of only two members of North Otago Cricket to have been awarded the honour.

“It’s not something I . went looking for and [I] was surprised to get it,” Cameron said.

When he took on the role of North Otago Cricket chairman in 2002, he never expected he would still hold the role 17 years later.

“I’m still looking behind me and there is not a queue.

“A lot of it depends on what enjoyment you get from it. The board at this stage has an exceptional group of people – it just makes it so much easier to operate.”

The biggest change for North Otago Cricket was moving from a committee to a board 10 years ago, he said.

“We ended up with people being nominated by their individual clubs at AGMs and a lot of them were only going along to meetings because it was an expectation of their club,” Cameron said.

“Now those that are on [the board] have more buy-in; they know they are there for a three-year term and the majority have continued from more than one of those terms.”

And a new pavilion had finally given North Otago Cricket a home after 120 years, he said.

The number of cricket teams in the competition had fallen, but there were enough “cricket fanatics” in the region to ensure the sport continued to thrive.

“We have, hopefully, revitalised and changed our competitions to make them more meaningful.

“In an area this size we are always going to have good years and bad years.

“Winning Hawke Cups and doing things like we have over the last 20 years is exceptional for a district of our size.”

And junior numbers were up, which was positive, he said.

The success of North Otago representatives Llew Johnson, Nathan Smith and Molly Loe showed there was a clear pathway to higher honours, he said.