The Styleness Manly Warringah Waratahs have had a big focus on the local community over the years. We believe this is one of the main reasons the club differentiates itself from other grade clubs in Sydney, as well as other clubs on the Northern Beaches.
Our Manly for Manly Community Program is testament to this.
Ultimately this community focus comes from the players. They are the ones who put the time and effort back into the local community.
As such, in 2015/16 we announced the establishment of the George Lowe Medal. After being won by Aidan Baker in 2015/16 and Mickey Edwards in 2016/17, Jordan Daly took out the award in 2017/18. The medal is once again up for grabs for the 2018/19 season.
The medal will be awarded at the end of season presentation night to the player who has contributed to the community the most throughout the season. This could be through junior club visits, donating blood, visiting Stewart House, or any of the other activities that our Manly for Manly program entails.
The Waratahs board voted unanimously to name the medal after George Lowe. He was a legend of our club and did more for the local cricketing community than anyone.
He was a great servant on the field, playing from 1906 to 1937, much of which he wasn’t able to run due to a WW1 injury.
He actually still holds our 3rd grade run scoring record in one season of 937 runs in the 1930-31 season. He literally did this without being able to run between the wickets, an amazing achievement.
But it was off the field that he will best be remembered. Along with fellow Club legends Jim Randall and Les Gwynne, George set-up the Saturday morning Manly Oval coaching clinics, a precursor to much of what we are doing now, but even more important because it was before the Junior Cricket Association was established, and therefore the only form of cricket for juniors on the Northern Beaches.
These clinics ran for 30 years, with rumours abounding that George did not miss one session during that time. He taught the kids the history of cricket, stressing Newbolt’s words “not how you won or lost, but how you played the game.”
For more than 20 years, George also coached country kids who were brought to Sydney by NSW Cricket, and brought his coaching nationwide recognition. He was subsequently awarded the “M.B.E” by the queen in 1969 “for services to sport, particularly cricket”.
George was said to be courageous and kind. He gave generously not only of his time and efforts, but also from his wallet, always awarding a junior player with a brand new bat after a strong performance.
Our 100 year book, published in 1978, probably best sums the respect that he is held in at Manly….. “His achievements and his record of service will stand proudly while ever the club exists, and it is unlikely that we shall look upon his like again.”
George Lowe was a great man, and honourable man, and a kind man. It is a great honour to the club to have our players’ community award named after such a legend of the club and local community.
We hope that the George Lowe Medal remains an established part of the Waratahs’ culture for years to come.