The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 12, Issue 12 (March 1, 1938.)
Panorama of the Playground — New Zealand Women's Cricket Team
Panorama of the Playground
New Zealand Women's Cricket Team
(Specially Written for “N.Z. Railways Magazine,” by W. F. Ingram.)
Although the Empire Games, and the excellent running of the New Zealand distance runners, took priority of place in the minds of New Zealand's sporting citizens, the performance of the women's cricket team in Australia was so full of merit that it must be chronicled in these columns.
This is the first occasion that a team of New Zealand women cricketers has left these shores, and it cannot be said that they left with the confident support of many people. They returned with the satisfaction of having more than justified their visit to the stronghold of women's cricket, and in future New Zealanders must realise that the standard here is high and worthy of every encouragement.
Five games were played, the results being as follow:—
v. New South Wales juniors, at Sydney, drawn. New South Wales juniors 111 (M. Hollis two for 11, J. Holmes two for 19, R. Martin one for 29, M. Thomas two for 29, P. Blackler for 8). New Zealand, 82 for four wickets (D. Hatcher 55).
v. Metropolitan, at Chatswood, won by 68 runs on the first innings. New Zealand 145 (D. Hatcher 41, P. Blackler 35 not out), and 68 for five (J. Holmes 22). North Metropolitan 77 (M. Hollis three for 18, M. Thomas four for 24, P. Blackler three for 18).
v. South Metropolitan, at Sydney, lost by seven runs. New Zealand 123 (M. Hollis 26, J. Holmes 17, P. Blackler 15, M. Corby 11, R. Ingram 10). South Metropolitan 130 (M. Hollis six for 32, M. Thomas three for 26, J. Holmes one for three).
v. New South Wales, at Sydney, lost by 18 runs. New Zealand 144 (I. Johns 37, D. Hatcher 22, I. Pickering 18, P. Blackler 15, J. Holmes 14, J. Fowler 11, M. Thomas 10). New South Wales 162 (M. Hollis six for 42, P. Blackler two for 30, M. Corby one for 9, J. Holmes one for 8).
v. Combined Country, at Sydney, won by 158 runs. New Zealand 347 for five, declared (I. Pickering not out 54, I. Johns 52, J. Fowler 50, R. Martin not out 39, D. Hatcher 13, M. Corby 11). Combined Country 89 (I. Pickering five for 23, J. Holmes three for 7).
Miss M. Hollis (Otago) was the most successful trundler—or is it trundless? —taking 17 wickets for 106 runs in four matches at an average of 6.2 runs a wicket. She was the only bowler to take more than 10 wickets, the others, Misses Holmes (seven for 50), M. Thomas (nine for 98), I, Pickering (five for 71), and P. Blackler (seven for 114) sharing the remainder of the wickets. Miss Hollis was really brilliant in the match against the strong New South Wales team, taking six wickets for 42 runs. When it is mentioned that this team included six players from the Australian team which had successfully toured England last year it will be appreciated that the New Zealander's bowler did no mean feat.
On the batting side, Miss I Johns (Auckland) topped the averages with three innings totalling 95 runs—an average of 31.6 an innings. The best aggregate was returned by Miss D. Hatcher (Wellington), who made 149 runs in five innings for an average of 29.8.
The match against New South Wales was anticipated to be far too big a task for the New Zealand girls, but they rose to the occasion, against a fast bowler considered equal to many leading male speedsters, and lost only by 18 runs.
Cricket for women is making steady progress in New Zealand, and as the result of this tour the public interest should be made more noticeable. It is not possible to improve the standard to an appreciable extent unless the public enthusiasm is shown by patronage of the game.
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New Zealand's Sporting Year.
New Zealand is having a real sporting year! A fully representative team has been in Sydney at the Empire Games, our surf life-saving men had a team in Australia for the first time on record, a New Zealander, Frank Livingstone, won the singles at the Australian Bowling Carnival staged as part of the Sesqui-centennial celebrations, and a team of police athletes are in Sydney ready to participate in the Australian Police Games.
This is a new departure for New Zealand—representation in the Police Gàmes by a strong team, although individuals have been competing there previously—and is a trend of the physical welfare movement which is being noted throughout New Zealand. All of the men chosen to represent the New Zealand Police Force are young with bright prospects of success in track and field, and, encouraged by the Commissioner of Police, Mr. D. J. Cummings, they are hopeful that they will perform with credit, and so set page 62 the ball rolling for the establishment of police clubs throughout the principal cities in New Zealand.
Eight years ago New Zealand had three policemen—Jack M'Holm, Peter Munro, and E. G. Sutherland—capable of holding their own in the best of company, but since then the standard has gradually slipped until to-day, with a definite sign of improvement, New Zealand has no really outstanding policeman-athlete. But Kofoed, a young field-event competitor, has taken the eye of A. L. Fitch, the American coach, and is likely to make his mark in the field of sport.
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Indian Hockey Tour.
The best news hockey players in New Zealand could have received came to hand recently when it was announced that a team of Indian hockey players would tour New Zealand this season. With a team of English women players and the Indians both touring the Dominion in one season, the stick and ball game should be much before the public, and some of the ground which has been lost to basket-ball should be regained.
New Zealand has had visits from Indian hockey teams on two previous occasions, and the standard shown was an eye-opener on each occasion. The mastery of the stick over the ball was nothing short of remarkable, and it is interesting to note that, since the last visit, teams of Indians in Wellington have taken the game up with enthusiasm. Although the local Indians have not yet gined the mastery of the ball to the same extent as their brothers from India, they are certainly making progress, and it will not be long before some of them will be among those worthy of selection as New Zealand representatives.
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A Useful Book.
I have made reference to A. L. Fitch, the American athletics coach, on numerous occasions in these columns, and have no qualms about once again mentioning his name. Fitch is a great worker and is doing good work among the athletes in Wellington ànd surrounding districts. A great worker, to be sure! Although devoting his time from daylight to dark in coaching athletes, teaching school-children the various phases of soft-ball, and giving illustrated lectures, he has produced a text-book on athletics that is most complete and valuable. I had the pleasure of being associated with him in the production of the book, and feel proud to have taken a part in compiling a book which I feel sure will play a big part in improving the standard of track and field sport in New Zealand. The book is entitled “Success on Track and Field.”
Cook Strait Swimmers.
In need of exercise after working indoors for the greater part of the week I have become a keen hiker, and have found a fine little walk from Wellington to the Terawhiti headland. Few Wellington residents know of the marvellous views to be seen from the hills which have been featured in several short stories by Will Lawson.
From the headland may be seen the hills in which gold was found many years ago, but the morning's walk is always made worthwhile by the view of the South Island with its snowcapped peaks.
On a fine day the South Island seems only a stone's throw away, and my hiking companion, formerly a well-known Taranaki distance swimmer, has often gazed across the narrow straits and remarked that his big regret is that he never had attempted to swim from one island to the other. It looks easy, but experienced fishermen can tell stories of the treacherous currents which make the crossing hazardous for swimmers, and it is significant that Miss Mercedes Gleitz, perhaps the greatest of distance swimmers, did not attempt to paddle her way across.
It is interesting, too, to recall that the first publicity received by “Lofty” Blomfield, New Zealand's outstanding wrestler, was when he arrived in Wellington as trainer to Webster who was anxious to swim Cook Strait—but never succeeded.