Lubbock wins award

SUFFOLK rugby stalwart Mike Lubbock is all smiles at the moment, having learned that his nomination for a Torch Trophy Trust Award has been successful.

SUFFOLK rugby stalwart Mike Lubbock is all smiles at the moment, having learned that his nomination for a Torch Trophy Trust Award has been successful.

He will be presented his trophy, for his outstanding voluntary work for Rugby Football Union, by the Countess of Wessex, at a ceremony in London later this month.

Each year the trust, of which Sir Bobby Charlton is president, examines around 40 nominations from across Great Britain.

The board of trustees, which includes football pundit Jimmy Hill, then choose between 18 and 20 winners, based on their outstanding contribution to their particular sport at its grass roots.

Suffolk Rugby Union's Ken Hanham, a good friend of Lubbock's said: “Mike has devoted 55 years to the game of rugby, and has assisted at every age range.

“A gifted senior player himself, he is the most dedicated person I have met, and his award will inspire budding players from eight years old right up to senior level.

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“Not only that, it will show that rugby is very much alive in Suffolk.”

Mike's rugby career makes impressive reading, having begun playing rugby at Norwich School,

he puts his captaincy of Loughborough, his five-year tenancy at scrum-half for Leicester Tigers, and captaining Suffolk, as his most memorable experiences.

He said: “I love rugby and I love coaching, and didn't do it for any praise or recognition.

“Having said that, I am absolutely thrilled with the whole thing.”

Mike has received many letters and calls of congratulations from various people, including

counsellor James Bidwell, the current mayor of Woodbridge, and Stephen Cole, headmaster of Woodbridge School, where Mike worked until retirement.

Cole said: “Woodbridge School was delighted to hear of Mike's award.

“He was director of games and master in charge of rugby for nearly a third of a century, and almost single handedly laid down the very strong tradition of rugby at the school.

“He was a superb player and coach, but arguably more importantly a superb schoolmaster - it is sportsmanship not gamesmanship that mattered.

“It is so fitting that his son Adam carries on that tradition in his father's former role, and his Woodbridge 1st XV is enjoying one of its best ever seasons.”

Mike will receive his award on Wednesday, November 29 at the Army & Navy Club, Pall Mall, London in front of many leading figures from the world of sport.

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