Saturday 9th May 2020
What is your nickname and why?
My nickname is Mary. It was given to me by Badger Ball (who else!) and over the course of an over one game he went from Daniel Woodrow to Barbara Woodhouse (one for the kids!) to Mary Whitehouse (another one for the kids!) to just Mary and it stuck. I had it on the back of my cricket bat and it was used so much that when a friend of mine called the clubhouse one day and asked to speak to Daniel the person answering didn’t know who they meant because they’d never heard me called that!
How / why did you join Abberton Cricket Club?
I was in a history class with James Carroll at school. He mentioned that his cricket team ( Under 15s, I think ) were short of players for a game one night and I put myself forward.
When was your league debut, who was it against and how did you get on?
My league debut was for the second XI at home against Stowmarket in the early 1990s. Percy Sadler was the captain - I didn’t bat but got a bowl at the end when it was obvious we would win and got my first wicket caught by Badger at mid-off. My first bit of rabbit-hunting, but definitely not my last…
What are your career best figures?
7-29 with the ball, forget against who.
82 against Braintree College, I batted at 10 and was run out on the final ball for a tie – brilliant game
43 cakes, 19 sandwiches and 8 pork pies at the tea table – that happened most games, to be fair.
What is your most memorable moment in a Abberton shirt?
This will probably sound silly, but it’s when Wardy got me a glass with my name on for behind the bar. I looked up to him, Dave Tingley, Tony Patmore, Ray Clay, Edgar Rumney and the other legends of the club so much when I joined and it was such a simple gesture from him but it meant an awful lot.
On the field it was when the players I had taken for Kwik cricket when they were 8 or 9 started and then again at Under 13 and 14 level started playing in the same senior team as me. I’m really proud of the work that Foxy, Dave Digby and I did with the colts and it is so rewarding to see some of them doing so well at the club now.
What is your all time Abberton XI?
These aren’t necessarily the best 11 players I played with, but they’re the ones that I played with most often and had the most fun with.
What is your favourite thing about Abberton?
It’s family. You can be up there a few times a week or only pop in once every year or two but it’s always the same – warm, friendly and like you’ve never been away.
What is your favourite away ground and why?
Frinton. Lovely surroundings, an old-fashioned scoreboard, a nice slope down from the clubhouse to the pitch and the birthplace of the FB XI after we had won there one day and a member of the opposition was heard to say “ I can’t believe we just lost to that bunch of fat b’ds. “
Who was the best player you played cricket with?
I played for Colchester colts for a season before I joined Abberton and Graham Napier was in the same team, I think he was playing for the Under 14s when he was 10. I’ve also played against Tymal Mills, Tom Westley and Ryan ten Doeschate for Abberton.
For Abberton, I think the best player was Sean Calladine. I captained his first game for the club – he’d got in touch to say he was looking for a team to play for and we put him in the 2nd XI to see what he was like. Needless to say, we won quite comfortably that day…
I had a piece of fielding named after me while at Abberton – “beaching”. Not sure if it’s still called that at the club now, but it’s the art of diving for a ball that you know you can’t get to so that someone else has to chase after it to the boundary. Mark Paget though I looked like a beached whale when I went down and that’s where the name comes from. There’s a great photo somewhere of me teaching it to all of the colts!