It’s many happy returns to former international umpire Davy Caldwell who celebrated his 80th birthday at the weekend.

After a distinguished playing career with Sion Mills, Donemana and Eglinton, ‘DW’ began umpiring in 1982, with his first match between St Johnston and Strabane.

His first senior cup final came in 1994, when he took charge of Ardmore’s first win in the decider, beating Eglinton.

He soon gained elevation, progressing through the ranks and umpired in seven international matches, taking charge of his first match against a South African side at Rathmines in 1999 with Trevor Henry, and officiated his last international with the late Eric Cooke when Ireland played Bangladesh at Limavady in 2004.

Davy is still going strong and is an invaluable member of the umpiring ranks, officiating in games all across the NW, showing no signs of slowing down as he enters his ninth decade.

Davy served as NW training officer, helping new officials learn the rules and regulations to allow them pass their exams to allow them to become umpires in the region.

He is also President of the Derry Midweek League, which raises thousands of pounds each year for charities across the NW.

Fellow international umpire, Paddy O’Hara, paid tribute to him saying: “Davy has been a wonderful servant to N.W. umpiring for what seems like a lifetime. “

He has been responsible for running umpire training courses for decades. NWACU&S have been so fortunate to have had such a knowledgeable and enthusiastic guy 'running the show' - and for so long.

"Happy Birthday Davy from all the cricketing fraternity.”