Father-daughter combination keeps Coleraine scoring in safe hands

Coleraine Cricket Club scorer Rebekah Douglas hard at work in her office, the score box at Sandel Lodge
Coleraine Cricket Club scorer Rebekah Douglas hard at work in her office, the score box at Sandel Lodge

On Saturday the province was gripped by Giro fever and it was hard to miss it wherever you went.

I felt like I was a man struggling to keep up with the peloton.

I arrived at Moylena, one of the few games to actually get underway at anything close to the scheduled start, after the riders had passed through.

Just as the Muckamore innings finished the heavens opened and a prolonged tea break ensued.

This gave me the opportunity to spend some time in the company of the scorers.

Muckamore’s Sandra Prentice is well known throughout the NCU, but it was the first time I had met Mary Magee from Merrion.

Sandra is a traditionalist favouring the pen and paper version of scoring. Mary, on the other hand, like most of the scorers in the Leinster Cricket Union uses an IPad and the application Total Cricket Scorer (TCS), but also keeps the trusty manual back-up as well.

Both shared an absolute passion for their work and “the book” is guarded like a treasured possession.

The fact that I approached with a cup of coffee in my hand to note down the scores was perhaps not greeted with universal approval.

It pays to know your place when it comes to getting the facts and figures!

Incessant rain ruled out a restart and checking on Twitter I noticed the match had just started in Coleraine with CIYMS the visitors.

Madness gripped me and I decided to follow the pink up to the North West.

On the way I was thinking about the number of female scorers now associated with the top clubs in the NCU and it struck me that in all likelihood Ann McCullough would be scoring for CIYMS.

Now as a foreigner to the North West due to my commitments in the NCU my basic knowledge was that Coleraine also used TCS, but I had no idea who was behind it.

So at the end as I walked across to the score box it was a surprise to meet a quite remarkable young woman.

Rebekah Douglas was there with her father Richard, so the love of the game is obviously in the family.

On the pitch was her brother Paul and two other brothers Matthew and Andrew also play.

So I asked had she thought about playing: “Well I actually don’t have the same level of co-ordination as my brothers dobut as they played and dad scored it seemed like the obvious thing to do to keep involved. I have been doing it for five years now.

“If there is Duckworth Lewis, Dad will use the traditional scorebook and I will work away with the updates on my laptop.”

An unexpected end to a remarkable day came as the news filtered through of Donemana’s shock defeat in Cork.

All I can say is I think that “the book” is in safe hands for Coleraine Cricket Club for the foreseeable future.