A small history of cricket in Ireland

The Lexicon is a magnificent building in Dun Laoghaire which hosts an equally magnificent library. On 17th February it hosted an interesting little exhibition called My Tabletop Museum.

The organisers called on collectors to bring their collection of music posters, toy cars, gramophones, indeed whatever it was that had become their personal obsession and show it to the public as part of a series of small table top museums. And cricket found its place at the table.

Think of Irish cricket historians and the likes of Ger Siggins, Billy Platt, Clarence Hiles and Jim Bennett immediately come to mind.

But Tipperary man, Pat Bracken, is another who is contributing to the fast growing library of Irish Cricket publications.  

In 2004 he published “Foreign and Fantastic Field Sports” Cricket in County Tipperary and he contributed a paper titled “Cricket’s Lost Generation: The Great War 1914-18 to the Sports History Ireland Conference in 2015.  All the while he has been collecting Irish cricket memorabilia .
Last weekend he took a small portion of his collection to the Lexicon Library along with a huge array of other exhibitors. On show on Saturday were books, programmes, scorecards, tickets and such, spanning many years of Irish cricket, club and individual.

My favourite was a Junior League medal from the Leinster Cricket Union won by the Royal Hibernian Marine School in 1910. Just a taster but plenty of people stopped at his table to take a look and question him on his contribution.

It got me thinking. Pat is eclectic in his collecting, picking up pieces from wherever he can. Throughout the country there are people with interesting stuff in their attic, clubs with some lovely stuff behind glass, wouldn't it be great if Cricket Ireland brought some of these objects together at a big game and showcased not just the history of the game but the people who are trying to preserve those memories.