Winners of last night's annual Channel Islands Sports Awards credited dedication and pride in their islands for their success.
Jersey cricket captain Charles “Chuggy” Perchard was crowned Betway Sports Personality of the Year at the black tie event at Beau Sejour.
Jersey sportspeople scooped most of the awards. They also won Coach of the Year, Team of the Year, Rising Star and the Judges’ Award.
Pictured: Winners of last night's Channel Islands Sports Awards of 2021.
“I was born with a bat and ball in my hands,” said Mr Perchard after being announced as winner of the Channel Islands' most prestigious sports award.
He said that his - and his team’s - success was driven by the pride and honour of representing Jersey.
“There is nothing better than representing your island and we are all so proud of what we have achieved. I love Jersey and I’m honoured to have received this award,” he said.
Mr Perchard said he was surprised to win from an impressive shortlist of local sports personalities.
“The standard of nominees was so high and, of them all, I’m the one with the lowest sporting pedigree, so I really was surprised. I was up against an Olympian and professional footballers. I have an office job.”
Pictured: Betway Sports Personality of the Year Charles "Chuggy" Perchard.
Mr Perchard said his father was a huge influence on his sporting success.
“My dad was throwing balls at me to hit since I was three. He’s a farmer and he turned a field into a cricket pitch for me and my brother.
“I’ve never not wanted to play cricket. I was born with a bat and ball in my hand.”
Jersey cricket was further recognised with the Team of the Year award.
Head Coach Neil MacRae said there were two key factors in a successful team.
“All the players have grown up in cricket and have been playing together for years. They have a bond that is hard to find in other teams and they support each other. And they all have so much pride in Jersey that it drives them to succeed,” said Mr MacRae.
“Successful teams are also born out of the tough moments. They make all the difference.”
Pictured: Captain of the Jersey cricket team Charles Perchard (left) and Head Coach Neil MacRae accepting the Team of the Year award.
The coach of the Jersey Bulls football team, Gary Freeman, said coaching was about players.
“It’s a great honour to have won Coach of the Year, but I would rather it be Team of the Year because the team deserve it,” said Mr Freeman.
“Coaching is about understanding the strength of every player on your team and coming together as a team.
"Every player has their own attributes. It’s about recognising that you can’t make people into something they’re not. You have to work with the strengths of the individual.”
Pictured: Jersey Bulls Head Coach Gary Freeman (right) won Coach of the Year
The awards were presented by badminton Olympic medallist Gail Emms MBE.
She said she was impressed with the raw sporting talent in the Channel Islands.
“Sportspeople have something inside them that drives them to excel and know that they can always be better," she said.
“It is an honour and privilege to be a part of recognising the talent of all the nominees. They all deserved to win.”
Pictured: Olympic badminton player Gail Emms was guest speaker at the Betway Channel Islands Sports Awards.
Guernsey’s Gail Queripel was awarded the Michael Lucas Sporting Hero Award for decades of work in netball.
Ms Queripel has also been on six world tours with England's national teams and coached international players.
“To me, coaching is not about awards. It’s about making a difference and helping every single player be the best they can be,” said Ms Queripel.
“It’s amazing to coach international players, but it means just as much to me when I can help a shy 11 year old come out of her shell and find something that she enjoys and gives her confidence.”
Pictured: Michael Lucas Sporting Hero Award winner Gill Queripel
Jersey Reds Athletic were recognised for their work off the pitch. The rugby team won the Judges' Award for Achievement for their charitable fundraising efforts.
They undertook a marathon by running laps of Les Minquiers sandbanks last year. Head Coach Myles Landick said the team wanted to give something back.
“When covid-19 restrictions interrupted our training, we decided we wanted to give something back to Jersey, which has given us so much," he said.
"We all felt very strongly that there was something we could be doing to help our island.
“We raised £8,000 for Friends of Jersey Oncology and we will definitely look to do more fundraising events in the future for other local charities."
Pictured: Myles Landick (left) and Tim Carson of Jersey Reds Athletic, who won the Judges' Award for Achievement.
Once your comment has been submitted, it won’t appear immediately. There is no need to submit it more than once. Comments are published at the discretion of Bailiwick Publishing, and will include your username.
There are no comments for this article.