Nomination is down to the hard work of players, says Bristol Rovers boss John Ward
Bristol Rovers boss John Ward says he has the hard work of his players to thank for being named as a candidate for League Two 'manager of the month' earlier this week.
Ward watched his side claim three wins – including two impressive victories on the road at Fleetwood Town and Rotherham United – from four games throughout January to be in the running alongside Gillingham manager Martin Allen and AFC Wimbledon boss Neil Ardley.
The winner will be announced tomorrow morning (9am) and Ward said: "A lot of these awards are based on what the team does and how hard they work. "It's a team effort and that's the way it has got to be. The players have worked extremely hard and get some good results throughout January and It is nice to have been recognised for that.
"The games are coming thick and fast, though, and we have to keep the standards as high as we can. It would be even nicer if we could get nominated for February, March and April. The priority, as always, is to make sure we are playing league football next season, but if these sorts of thing come along the way then that is great."
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Skipper Tom Parkes is also in the running for 'player of the month' along with Northampton's Chris Hackett and AFC Wimbledon striker Paul McCallum and Ward said: "There aren't many players that captain a side at 21 years of age.
"Tom relished the challenge when I offered it to him and is exceptionally proud to be the captain of Bristol Rovers. I think his game has benefited from it. "I've seen young players struggle with that sort of responsibility in the past. Tom, however, has reveled in it and been a very strong centre back in a team that really needed to improve in that area."