Sports Awards 2012: Solicitors up there with leaders
There are many similarities between running a business and managing a sports team or coaching an athlete.
That is one of the reasons why Moss Solicitors is sponsoring the coach/manager of the year honour at the Leicester Mercury Sports Awards.
David Pagett-Wright, a partner at the Loughborough solicitors, said: "We consider it to be one of the top categories of the evening.
"There is a connection with the business environment that we work in, too.
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"Managers and coaches support and guide teams through success and failure using their experience, energy and skill. That is similar to business leaders.
"I think this award recognises the hard work and commitment needed in the role of being a leader and getting the best out of a group of people.
"Again, that is similar to running a business."
The 2011 award was won by Adam Stevens, who steered Coalville Town FC to the Midland Alliance title and an appearance at Wembley in the FA Vase final.
Moss Solicitors hosted a table at the 2011 awards and bosses were so impressed they decided to take a more prominent role for 2012.
Mr Pagett-Wright said: "When we attended last year, we were really impressed with the evening and the array of sporting talent from Leicestershire that was there.
"We very much wanted to be associated with that.
"We are also very keen to support community issues. So with the awards being local and sports-based, that ticked both boxes."
Mr Pagett-Wright follows Leicester City's fortunes in the Championship, with the Foxes looking a good bet for the play-offs this season.
But he also has a grasp of life at grassroots level as he helps to coach the under-13 football team at Rothley Imps.
"Both my children enjoy sport, so I see a lot of junior sport," he said.
"There is some remarkable talent out there and I think there is quite a lot to be excited about at junior level."
The Mercury awards will again highlight that, with the winners and commended athletes in the young and junior categories coming from a wide range of sports.
"We continue to produce good sportsmen and women," said Mr Pagett-Wright.
"There is a lot going on at local level. There are hundreds of people across the county who spend their time in the background helping out.
"They are just as important as the more recognisable people."
The awards will be handed out at a ceremony at Leicester Tigers' Welford Road ground on January 17.