MCG recognition for south-west cricket stalwarts Hodgens and Boyd

PORT Fairy Cricket Club stalwart Phillipa Hodgens has only attended one day of the Boxing Day Test.

It was “about 10 or 12 years ago” and Australia was playing the old enemy, England.

“But it was rained out. They said ‘you can come back tomorrow’ but tomorrow was a Saturday and I was scoring so we didn’t go back.”

The decision to instead give priority to her voluntary role with the Pirates is one of the reasons she’ll return to the MCG today.

Cricket Victoria will recognise Hodgens’ commitment to grassroots cricket at a Kookaburra volunteer recognition breakfast at the ’G this morning.

She is one of 20 volunteers who will attend the function and day three of Australia-Sri Lanka Test. The list also includes Stoneyford cricket stalwart Kevin Boyd.

Cricket Victoria chief executive officer Tony Dodemaide and former Australian star Melanie Jones will be guest speakers at the annual recognition presentation.

“I feel embarrassed … it’s absolutely amazing,” Hodgens said.

“I think there are people who do a lot more in cricket than I do that deserve it more. Every little club nationwide has its volunteers.

“I’m sure there are more people that do more than I do — even down to the ladies that do the afternoon tea. That’s far worse than scoring.”

People at Port Fairy disagree with Hodgens’ modesty.

Her claim to fame is as the club’s main scorer, a job she’s done more than 200 times for the first XI since the mid-1990s.

She has been a committee member since 1993, is into her ninth season as club secretary and served one season as president “when no one else would do it”.

Beyond the official roles, Hodgens has cooked teas, sold raffle tickets and raised countless funds for the coastal club she serves passionately.

She earned life membership of Port Fairy in March 2009.

“I like the club and I like cricket. I think I’d miss it if I didn’t do it,” Hodgens said.

“I’m getting older and I don’t think I’m as accurate as I used to be.

“I enjoy watching cricket and obviously you have to do something while you’re watching.

“It’s is a brilliant place to be at the moment — for a club that started in 1849 and has continued, it’s amazing.

“We’ve got a great history, we’ve got a great supporter base and the kids that play are wonderful.”

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