Craig Smith from Newcastle-Under-Lyme has received a £500 OCS Young Sports Person Award in recognition of his outstanding sporting ability. In the awards scheme, run in partnership with the charity SportsAid, badminton player Craig beat stiff competition to win one of two runners-up prizes for the Midlands region.
15 year old Craig Smith plays both singles and level doubles with his twin brother Marcus. Coached under three times national champion, Colin Haughton, Craig has competed in both national and international level events. In 2009 Craig and his brother were the county's most successful players when the U13 Staffordshire Junior Circuit Gold tournament was held at Fenton Manor Sports Centre. Craig achieved a joint gold medal in the doubles and a silver medal in the singles.
Previous OCS Young Sports Person Award winners include gymnasts Beth Tweddle MBE and Louis Smith, athlete Richard Buck and Paralympic field athlete Nathan Stephens.
Chris Cracknell, chief executive of OCS said, “The OCS Young Sports Person Awards, now in its 14th year, highlights our commitment to supporting young people who are great role models, not only for their peers, but for many others in business and the community. Their drive and relentless determination to achieve their goals is inspirational. Our grass-roots scheme helps young athletes right at the start of their career when support and funding is needed most. Well done to the athletes who have been rewarded this year and we hope that they will have the same success as many of our past winners, some of whom look set to represent GB in London 2012.”