A Magical Welcome
I have been incredibly lucky during my cricketing career.
From the age of 8, when I first went along to the Sunday mornings sessions at my local club, I have received a wonderful amount of support and encouragement from my teammates and coaches.
I have been given some incredible opportunities and experiences: reaching the National Finals with my club’s girls’ team; representing my county; and playing at the Home of Cricket in my university’s Varsity matches. It doesn’t really get much better!
There may not be any cricket matches happening at the moment but CUWCC are still playing virtual cricket! Looks like the #socialdistancing might be getting to a couple of our players…
(Cambridge University, Elspeth’s old University team practicing social distancing)
That’s not to say I haven’t seen or experienced discrimination, but I have always felt included in the cricketing world regardless of my gender.
My time at LMTCC in Spain is no exception.
Captain Kieran’s quick reply to my email enquiry last July, inviting me along to their next training session, set the tone for the friendly welcome I was to receive. Everyone was more than happy to lend me kit, give me coaching tips and make me feel an integral part of the team from day one. I was even given my first cricketing nickname – Hermione Granger.
Nowhere was this warm welcome more evident than on our tour to Cártama in November. Many of my friends and family questioned my decision to be the only girl on a “lads’ tour to Málaga”. They needn’t have worried. From the moment I arrived, in full Hogwarts gear, I was treated with the respect and camaraderie I have always associated with cricket.
The following three days were brilliant. It was fantastic to spend all day playing and watching cricket, and then sample the cultural delights of Torremolinos and Benalmádena at night. Accompanied at all times by Crookshanks, the monkey, of course. On the second day of the tournament, I was given the chance to show my magic with the ball, and took my first wickets for LMTCC. It was a great moment, especially since one of my victims was our own Lucius Malfoy, playing for the opposition in true Slytherin style.
The next day was even better. After a closely fought semi-final and final, LMTCC were crowned tournament champions. It was the perfect way to end a fun weekend with such a great group of lads.
Sadly, the current lockdown has prevented us from building on last year’s triumphs, and I am already missing my new teammates. Hopefully, the situation will improve soon, and we can get back out on the middle. In the meantime, Crookshanks and I will continue our catching drills at home!