Rex Smith's 26-year career as Cornwall premier cricket coach and his devotion to the game's administration has seen him made a member of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Smith, the chairman of the Auckland Cricket Association, has been on that board for 16 years.

During that period Auckland's representative teams have had regular national success and the structure and sustainability of clubs has been developed through the Club is the Hub programme.

Smith has been one of the driving forces behind that programme which gives financial support to clubs and enables them to be run professionally.

He has also been a representative on the Eden Park Trust Board for 14 years.

Through his contribution to Cornwall he has guided almost an entire generation of cricketers through their premier ranks.

Auckland Cricket chief executive Mark Cameron applauded the decision.

"Rex has given much of his life to the betterment of cricket in Auckland. He has contributed an incredible amount as a coach, selector, board member and as an advocate for cricket at Eden Park.

"Most of what he has done for cricket has happened behind closed doors and does not get the recognition it should."