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ECB reveals journalism award-winners

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The ECB has announced the winners of the County Cricket Journalism Awards – a new competition designed to recognise outstanding contributions towards the coverage of domestic cricket during the 2011 county season.

Freelance journalist Graham Hardcastle, who covers Yorkshire and Lancashire regularly for regional and national newspapers, was named young journalist of the year. He receives a £5000 scholarship from the ECB to report on an overseas cricket event preferably involving county teams.

The Times was named county cricket newspaper of the year in the national newspaper category with the Yorkshire Post winning the regional newspaper award. Guardian Online collected the award for the best online coverage of county cricket.

The judging of the awards was conducted by a four-strong panel comprising the chairman of the cricket writers’ club, Pat Gibson; BBC Radio reporter Kevin Howells; Paul Bolton who covers county cricket regularly for the Daily and Sunday Telegraph and The Cricketer; and ECB chief executive David Collier.

The awards were presented to the victors today by Collier as part of an official Lord’s Taverners reception for this year’s LV=County Championship title winners, Lancashire.

The winners accompanied the women’s county champions, Kent, as well as Lancashire to Buckingham Palace for the annual presentation of the trophies by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, who is patron and 'twelfth man' of recreational cricket’s official charity.

Collier said: “These awards are designed to recognise and reward the excellent coverage our domestic game continues to receive at national and provincial level both in print and online.

“2011 was an exciting year for county cricket and this was reflected in a high standard of entries in all categories. We send warm congratulations to all our winners and also offer sincere thanks to those members of the media who took part in the judging process.”