FOLLOWING an enforced two-year hiatus, Rugby Town’s annual presentation evening returned to the club’s hospitality suite after the recent home game against Northampton Chenecks.
After back-to-back Covid affected campaigns had seen the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons curtailed prematurely, there was finally chance to recognise the achievements and contributions made on and off the pitch.
Club Director Mike Yeats hosted the even with the bulk of the trophies going to just two Town players – Caine Elliott and David Kolodynski.
20-year-old Elliott returned to Rugby a few weeks into the new term for a third season at Butlin Road after initially starting the campaign at Stratford, and he went on to put in a number of impressive performances in Valley’s midfield.
His 2021-22 efforts saw him scoop up four of the awards available on the night – with manager Carl Adams giving him the nod as his Player of the Year, and his fellow players and the club’s Vice Presidents following suit.
Elliott also topped the match-by-match nomination rankings to secure the Media Star Man gong as well.
All-time appearances and goals record holder Kolodynski returned to Rugby for a fourth spell at the club towards the end of the last curtailed season, and has once more been in great scoring form with 27 goals to-date.
Kolodynski – who turned 33 earlier in the year – took home the Supporters’ Player of the Year trophy, as well the shield for most appearances in the season and the Golden Boot for being top scorer.
A special framed photograph was also presented to him in recognition of him reaching 250 goals in a Valley shirt recently.
Young striker Madundo Semahimbo also received one of club photographer Martin Pulley’s excellent framed shots to acknowledge his breakthrough into the first team in the final quarter of the campaign.
There were further shields for kit man Mark Cross and longstanding supporter Martin Defferd for their excellent commitment, whilst the Clubman of the Year award went to Steve Troup – who regularly travels over from his home in the Isle of Man to support the team.
The Kolodynski family as a whole were also recognised for their ongoing support.
Both Yeats and Adams provided summaries of the nearly concluded season, reflecting on a good run in the FA Vase, the potential third place finish in the UCL Premier South Division behind what proved to be two formidable outfits in Harborough and Hinckley Leicester Road and also the club’s youth team’s excellent run in the FA Youth Cup which saw them reach the Third Round Proper of the competition for the first time in their history.
Adams confirmed that plans were already in place and active to try and make the 2022-23 campaign an even more successful one, with ten of the current squad having already agreed contracts with the club to ensure that the team can hit the ground running from the very beginning of the new season in August.
On a more sombre note however, Yeats also reflected on the sad passing of a number of valued members of the Valley family over the past year – including club stalwarts Tony Mann and Jim Dand.
Full List of 2021/22 Awards:
Manager’s Player of the Year: Caine Elliott
Players’ Player of the Year: Caine Elliott
Jim and Kit Dand Memorial Supporters’ Player of the Year: David Kolodynski
Vice Presidents’ Player of the Year: Caine Elliott
Golden Boot (top scorer): David Kolodynski
Media Star Man: Caine Elliott
Bob Giles Memorial (most appearances): David Kolodynski
Tony Mann Memorial (special contribution): Martin Defferd
Carl Barnes Memorial (commitment): Mark Cross
Clubman of the Year: Steve Troup