An inspirational teenager from Sutton who died of a rare and incurable cancer has been honoured for his heroic fundraising efforts before his passing.

Joe Lunn, who played for Sutton Cricket Club as a wicket keeper and batsman, raised more than £16,000 for charity in the months after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer, making headlines and inspiring the local community.

“You’d never know he was going through it, apart from when he’d boast about the scar he had from his chest to his belly button,” his friend and Sutton teammate Sam Schofield said.

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“There was never any complaining, he was still full of beans, full of life. Obviously he would have had his low moments but it was testament to his strength that he would never let you know what was going on, it was only ever positive with him.

Joe was admitted to hospital in April 2019 with what was suspected appendicitis.

Instead, the teenager was diagnosed with synovial sarcoma, a rare and incurable cancer which affects around one in a million people.

But he refused to bow to his illness, going on a string of fundraising events and defying initial predictions that he would not live to see 2020, managing to play cricket through last summer.

“There wasn’t a dry eye in the house,” Schofield said. “We managed to get a Sunday fixture in late August and he got his first and only hundred for the club. It was such an amazing moment."

Joe took on a 100-mile static bike ride in his back garden in aid of Rays of Sunshine after his initial plans were scuppered by the pandemic, and in total he raised over £16,000.

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He sadly passed away in March on his 19th birthday, and an excess of £35,000 has since been raised in his name.

Joe Lunn was posthumously announced as the winner of the LV= Insurance Fundraising Hero award for 2021 at the Pride of Cricket Awards.

“I still can’t get my head around it. I would probably struggle to be as strong as he was," said Schofield.

“When he played his last game at the club and the season closed, we got the feeling we weren’t getting much good news coming out of it.

“Those last few months it was all about him and the family.

"It’s still hard to think about him not being around. We always think about him and talk about him.”

Five of his Sutton teammates are due to take on the London Marathon for his chosen charity, Rays Of Sunshine in October, and Schofield says the community will keep his memory alive by continuing Joe’s fundraising work for as long as they can.

“It’s only going to go up and up, we’re going to do stuff every year for him.”