Howick resident, Anthony German, has won the title of ‘Specsavers’ Favourite Kiwi Cricket Umpire’ in a nationwide search by Specsavers and New Zealand Cricket, to reward unsung heroes of club cricket.
Competing against a high calibre group of finalists, Anthony, aged 43, claimed the title after dedicating his weekends to coaching and umpiring cricket for his son’s team of ten-year-old boys.
Anthony, general manager of a NZ stainless steel distributor, who was nominated by his ten-year-old son Max, says he is delighted to have won and is looking forward to meeting some BLACKCAPS as part of his prize.
“I was humbled to be named a finalist let alone the overall winner. It’s such a great prize and an honour to receive the title, so a big thanks to Specsavers for recognising us umpires who do it simply for the love of the game.
“I’ve never had so many texts in my life – I was in Singapore last week when the finalists were announced and came out of a meeting inundated with messages from my friends. Who knows what will happen when the word gets out that I’ve won!” says Anthony.
As the competition winner Anthony received a one-on-one training session with a high profile NZ umpire, $1000 spending money, two tickets to the BLACKCAPS vs India ANZ International Test at Eden Park 6-10 February and a money can’t buy experience with four New Zealand BLACKCAPS for his local club.
Rodger McHarg, NZ Cricket’s National Umpiring Manager, says, “Congratulations to Anthony for being named Specsavers’ favourite Kiwi cricket umpire. We are thrilled to once again be involved in this initiative and acknowledge the role of volunteer umpires in New Zealand. We need a lot more volunteers like Ant so that more games can have quality umpiring at all levels”.
Nominator, ten-year-old Max says he is glad his dad won the grand prize because he deserves it.
“Dad makes the game fun; he is a fair player and always wants us to be the best team we can be,” says Max.
Graeme Edmond, Specsavers New Zealand Director, says, “Specsavers has been supporting domestic cricket umpires since 2010 and this competition celebrates and rewards those unsung heroes who give up their own time to further club cricket in New Zealand. Thousands of volunteers like Anthony make grassroots cricket accessible to all New Zealanders.”