December 29, 2009

Burning the scone-sheets

Nitin Sundar

If Hazel Smith had started her cricketing career in a different era, she may well have made a mark with her on-field exploits. She was all of 15 when took to cricket in the 1930s, however family commitments nipped her career in the bud and she quit playing five years later. "I was married when I was 20 and in those days you never kept going with your own things, you stopped," she reminisced on her decision.

Relinquishing the whites however did not deter Ms. Smith, who went on to earn her bread in a different field and script her own recipe for success. For 35 years, she has fed boys at the Cameron Cricket Club near Melbourne with home-baked scones and sandwiches. Though scorers have not kept track of her progress, she is believed to have made around 27,000 sandwiches and 20,000 scones over the years. Her efforts were recognized during the Boxing Day Test match in Melbourne where she was awarded with an International Cricket Council (ICC) Centenary Volunteer Medal, not in recognition of runs scored or wickets taken, but of scones and sandwiches baked.

Nitin Sundar is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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