The late chairman of Watford Town Cricket Club has been posthumously recognised as an unsung cricket hero as part of a campaign to celebrate the sport at grassroots level.

Simon Prodger, who was instrumental in founding the African Caribbean Cricket Association in 2013, has been chosen as the MCC (Marylebone Cricket Club) Community Cricket Heroes honorary 12th man for his outstanding contribution to grassroots cricket and his community.

Simon, who lived in Rickmansworth, died on Saturday, April 8 but his contribution to the promotion of healthy pursuits through cricket at grassroots level has enabled, amongst other projects, the distribution and training for 750 clubs across England and Wales for the use of defibrillators. He also played for various amateur clubs, including Harlow CC, Hoddesdon CC, the Stragglers of Asia, the Kenya Kongonis, Harefield CC and Watford Town.

The MCC Community Cricket Heroes were chosen last week by a special panel which included MCC President Stephen Fry and former England internationals Mike Gatting and Claire Taylor, with the 11 winners joining the MCC President to watch the England v Ireland Test match from the prestigious President’s Suite at the ‘Home of Cricket’ Lord’s.

The MCC President said: “We had an incredible response to the campaign and I want to thank everyone who sent in nominations and took part. It really brought home the amazing work that it is done by countless individuals, many of them volunteers, to support our wonderful grassroots game.

“It was a hugely difficult task for the panel to narrow the nominations down and choose our final MCC Community Cricket Heroes, but Simon’s nomination stood out and we thought it only right to honour Simon’s commitment to cricket at a grassroots level as an honorary 12th man.”

The campaign to find a team of 11 Community Cricket Heroes was launched in March by MCC alongside The Cricketer magazine, and encouraged the cricket community and the public to submit nominations from volunteers who go above and beyond for their cricket club and community, to coaches who are inspiring people on and off the pitch or players who have overcome adversity to play or help the game.