KIDDERMINSTER Harriers boss Steve Burr and striker Jamille Matt have scooped the Blue Square Bet Premier manager and player of the month awards.
The pair have been recognised following a December that saw the Aggborough outfit burst into the play-off places with five successive league victories.
Burr, also winner of the accolade in December 2011, led his team to triumphs over fellow promotion hopefuls Wrexham (2-0) and Newport County (3-2) as well as Tamworth (1-0), Dartford (5-1) and rivals Hereford United (1-0), who Harriers host tomorrow (3pm).
That quintet has formed part of a seven-match winning streak, the longest in non-league’s top-flight this season. Harriers scored 12 goals, seven from the boot of striker Matt, conceded three and kept three clean sheets.
The only blip in December was the 1-0 FA Trophy defeat at Bromley.
Matt’s efforts, including a hat-trick against Newport, have earned him the player prize which he also won in December 2011. The striker’s achievement is even more remarkable given he has only just returned from a nine-month absence following work permit issues with the UK Border Agency.
Matt attracted bids from Northampton last season and his return has alerted a string of other clubs, including Premier League side West Bromwich Albion, ahead of the January transfer window.
He said: “I am back now and all I want to do is concentrate on my football, put the nine months I missed out of the way and try to make it like I’ve never been missing.
“I don’t think I am back at full match fitness. I have been blowing at the end of games but I will take scoring goals when I am not fully match sharp.”
Chester boss Neil Young and midfielder Antoni Sarcevic are manager and player of the month in Blue Square Bet North. Sarcevic scored the opening goal in Chester’s 4-1 defeat of Worcester City in December.