Bundoora United’s Joel Thompson has claimed the Diamond Valley Cricket Association’s Money Shield best and fairest trophy.
Thompson, who was recruited to the Bulldogs last year, starred in his first season having previously been one of the North Metro Cricket Association’s best players.
Thompson claimed the John Gleeson Medal by three votes, with a best on ground performance in the final round.
He finished on 18 votes, three ahead of Montmorency’s Ruwinda Shaman. Both players were on 15 votes heading into the final round.
Thompson said the best and fairest award was a “nice way to finish off the individual year”.
“It’s always a good thing to put in the work, the time and the effort, and to have that [recognised],” he said.
“Individually, when you follow the process, it’s really nice to end up with an award for your effort.
“Obviously it wasn’t the result we wanted [as a group], we didn’t finish how we wanted to, but individually, it was great.”
The Bulldogs finished fifth this season after a finals appearance the season before.
Thompson topped the batting ranks in the Money Shield this season, making 651 runs at an average of just over 54. He also took nine wickets.
It was the second time Thompson has claimed a competition best and fairest award. He previously claimed the Bill McFarlane Medal for the NMCA’s best player in 2015-16.
Thompson said that “to go back to a club where my career started was great”.
He previously played under-12s at the club.
“The club’s in a really good place at the moment… hopefully next year we can improve further.”
Thompson will take his involvement in the club to the next level next season.
He has been appointed as captain-coach, replacing Mathew Ross.
Thompson was also named in the Money Shield team of the year, alongside teammate Corey Cogan.
Bundoora Park’s Thilina Herath, Rubal Singh-Dhillon, and Bradley and Daniel Fox were also named in the team. Bradley Fox was named captain.
Bundoora’s Ryan Eley was also named in the team.
In the Barclay Shield, North Eltham Wanderers Adam Rsapatsaris claimed the Ray Christesen Medal for the top division’s best and fairest. He finished on 26 votes, eight clear of second.