deserve to receive or deserve receiving?

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I see a test on infinitive and gerund on a website:
- The medical team deserves (receive) the award for their volunteer work in sub-Saharan Africa.

The correct answer is 'deserves to receive', but in the dictionary I see it states that 'deserves' can go with infinitive and gerund. So, why is 'deserves receiving' in this case wrong?

Thank you very much.
  • Beryl from Northallerton

    Senior Member
    British English
    It certainly can go with a gerund, but not this one, I wouldn't have thought.

    I think that we tend not to use gerunds when there exists a related noun (ie. one formed from the same verb), in this case 'receipt'.

    Not that I'm suggesting that 'he deserves receipt of ..' sounds natural. It's just that 'receipt' tends to mop up a lot of the uses that 'receiving' might be assigned were it the case that 'receipt' didn't exist.

    eg. "Closing date for receipt of applications is Friday 15th March 1991" :tick:, instead of "Closing date for receiving of applications is Friday 15th March 1991" :( .
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