Chairman; Junior Development Officer; ECB Level 2 Coach; Executive Committee & Junior & Coaching Sub-Committee Member; Village Hall Management Committee Chairman; Right-hand batsman; Right-arm bowler (occasional!)
Called simply ‘Chairman’ these days, but remembered as ‘Bungers’ by older members, Steve is one of the founder members and the driving force behind the club. Now officially an OAP having turned 65, he is still enjoying his cricket after a 42-year career – 33 of those as Chairman – and tops the appearance list having played 942 games. He was “never much good at anything other than fielding” according to him but has, nevertheless, contributed hugely to the club’s success story having scored 11,181 runs at an average of 16.58 and taken 367 wickets – mostly in the 70s, 80s and 90s – at an economical average of 15.73. His ‘bucket’ hands have held a record 426 catches. The highlights of his long career were his only century, at Hales in 1997 and his straight six of the penultimate ball to win the EDP Cup against Cromer in 2000 but he has Norfolk League winners’ medals for Divisions 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 1A and 2A and 3 League Cup winner’s medals. He was the club’s first Player of the Year in 1978, repeated the feat with the A Team in 1996 and 97 and made it a hat-trick with the B Team awards in 2004 and 2005. Steve was also voted Clubman of the Year from 2001-5 and received the trophy again in 2008 and jointly with his brother in 2010. Last season he found unexpected success as an opening batsman in the C Team, scoring two half-centuries so there is life in the old dog yet, although a broken finger and an impending operation on another, might curtail his cricket in 2017. Often blamed for the ridiculous length of committee meetings, the Chairman is not one for staying quietly in the background and is famed for his rhymes and raps at club dinners. Quick to poke fun at others, he sets himself up to be the butt of jokes when his own form – or memory – fails him – as both often do! An ECB Level 2 coach, the flourishing Junior Section and the club’s standing in the County are testament to his drive and enthusiasm. His service to cricket meant that, in 2005, he and his family had the honour of meeting the Queen at one of her Garden Parties; he was nominated for an OSCA (Outstanding Service to Cricket Award) in 2005 and, in 2009, he received a Sky Sports Award for services to coaching on the pitch at Trent Bridge. The Phoenix family are at the heart of Great Melton C.C. Steve’s father Robert, who died in 2006, was instrumental in helping the club acquire and develop Melton Park; his brother, Mike, is groundsman; his wife, Celia, Welfare Officer and son, Olly, and daughter, Lucy, have both played for the club. Steve was a teacher at Wymondham High School for 36 years before his retirement in 2011 and was well known in the County as a footballer with Wymondham Old Boys – where he was captain and secretary – and Wymondham Sunday. Always one of life’s ‘doers’, as well as being Chairman Steve is also a trustee for the ground; Chairman of the Village Hall Management Committee; coaches; helps run the U13s; coordinates and arranges the fixtures and the volunteers including Cricketforce Day; is Clubmark Officer; liaises with the schools; organises the Junior Festival; compiles contact lists; writes match-reports; organises trophies and much more besides! He will be a hard man to replace when he eventually decides to call it a day!