TRINITY CRICKETERS' ALMANACK; 1st EDITION -- Edited by Gerard Siggins.
People have reacted to the non-medical effects of Covid-19 in many different ways. Personally writing my 16 Episode account of DUCC's League winning season of 50 years ago was both an enjoyable challenge and top-class therapy. With a complete set of photocopied "scorecards" and email and phone numbers for most of the extant participants it was achievable if fairly time consuming.
I feel, therefore, qualified to be truly amazed by what Ger Siggins has produced. If there is a bit of poetic licence involved in fixing 1820 as the "birth place" of DUCC the amount of factual information to cover the period since (especially) 1840 defies expectation.
The work of the Editor himself and David Penney cannot be lauded sufficiently. Players' records in Leinster League (from 1919) and Cup (from 1935) owe a huge debt of gratitude to the late Derek Scott and, more recently, Gerry Byrne.
The essence of a Cricket Almanack, as established by Wisden, is that there are always details and statistics that the reader can search out. Having done so they will then branch out in several further directions and reach so many other such gems.
It would not be in many such publications that one could find lists of "DU Cricketers who played for Ireland in other sports" , "Seven wickets in an innings (for 20 runs or fewer)", "Most runs by one family", and, ( a short list this!) Trinity Cricketer who won a NOBEL PRIZE for LITERATURE!
If you were "Waiting for Godot", then it is appropriate that the last entry on the Final (240th) Page is S.B. Beckett's 1970 award.
In homage, I suspect, to Wisden itself Ger has made good use of DUCC's Club colours, especially the Old Gold. The sections which follow 42 Introductory pages are all preceded by a Wisden-style (and font) yellow page.
There are 7 such sections all packed with gems of information culminating in David Penney's compilation of the membership from 1840 - 2020!
Your reviewer discovered from this that his father had played 1 League game for DUCC in 1924 to my complete surprise. The Editor expresses his thanks to the many people whose purchase of "advance copies" enabled the publication of this book.
If we have any interest in Irish Cricket, DUCC Cricket, or even the social History of Ireland we will be indebted to those but even more to the Editor (and his Team) who have provided such an outstanding Volume. I expect we won't have to wait another Bicentenary nor Pandemic for the 2nd Edition to arise.
* The book is available in Hodges Figgis bookshop in Dawson Street, Dublin, or online at TrinityCricket.com, price €25 to an address in Ireland, €28 in Britain, and €32 to anywhere else in the world.