MIKE Wilcox bode an emotional farewell to Cinderford at the club’s annual awards dinner on Friday.
Held at the club’s Dockham Road ground, the evening saw outgoing skipper Wilcox thanked by the club for his service over the last five years and received a standing ovation after giving his captain’s speech.
Wilcox has agreed to join Hartpury College this summer.
Also honoured on the night was Roger Birkin, who won the First XV player of the year and supporters player of the year awards as club president Pete Bell spoke warmly of the second row.
“There’s an awful lot of passion on the sideline and we talk a lot about what it’s like to play for Cinderford RFC, or any rugby club,” Bell said.
“What I like about this guy is that he plays for the shirt. He comes off the pitch blood sweat and tears every game and puts his heart and soul into every rugby match. He digs deep every time.”
Birkin thanked the club’s supporters and his teammates after receiving the award.
“I’m grateful to the supporters, because they’ve been absolutely fantastic,” he said.
“We’re not easy to support but you come to every ground and there’s always a lot of you there.
“The last two seasons have been the toughest I’ve known but the team’s been absolutely fantastic and now we have the staff too, so bring on next season.”
United captain Dino Dallavalle was named as his side’s player of the year, and said it had been ’a pleasure’ to skipper the team in a letter as he was unable to attend the evening.
Reuben Hinds won the Stags’ player of the year award having been the team’s top points and try scorer with 13 scores, while James Taylor won the same honour for the Combination Cup-winning Bucks XV.
Jordan Taylor was named Colts’ player of the year, and Dave Bradley won clubman of the year.
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