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Edward Liddle's Biographies of Irish Cricketers
Enda Anthony McDermott
  • Born 1 December 1945, Dublin
  • Educated Newbridge College, Co Kildare
  • Occupation Insurance Broker
  • Debut 12 August 1981 v MCC at Lord's
  • Cap Number 543
  • Style Left hand batsman; occasional wicket keeper
  • Teams Clontarf

Enda McDermott was a sound upper order batsman, often opening the innings, who was a heavy scorer for Clontarf for many years. Though a regular in the North Leinster Interprovincial side from 1970, he took some time to pass the half century mark, which probably accounts for the fact that he did not gain international selection until he was nearing his 36th birthday.

In Leinster Senior Cricket, he scored 11583 runs for Clontarf, the highest aggregate for the Castle Avenue side, at 26.93. He hit ten centuries, highest 130*, second only to Deryck Vincent's 13, besides passing fifty on 59 other occasions. He also held 141 catches, 15 while acting as wicket keeper. He was somewhat less successful with the bat in the All Ireland Cup, making 289 runs in the 24 matches he played with a highest score of 40.

A regular player for the Leprechauns, he was often seen to good advantage in their matches. On the England tour of 1969, for example he topscored in the three matches in which he played. Against Bramhall CC batting at 4, he made 101 - the next highest score being 34 - thus playing the major part in a 58 run victory. He also topscored in defeats at the hands of the historic Southgate Club and a near full strength Essex side. In the latter match, on the county ground at Chelmsford, he made 69 before being bowled by John Lever. It was thus solely due to Enda that the visitors did not suffer an even heavier defeat than that by 97 runs. The following season he again topscored against the County, making 41, out of a total of 84, before being lbw to Keith Pont.

He played in the North Leinster interprovincial side form 1970 to 1988, scoring 1328 runs at 27.10 with two centuries and four fifties. His first hundred came in 1981 in a four wicket win over South Leinster at Rathmines. The hosts had batted first making 174, owing much to a 76 from Ginger O'Brien. Enda took charge from the start of the North Leinster innings, and, despite some good bowling from Eamon Masterton who eventually dismissed him for 107, victory was never in doubt with a 6 wicket win being recorded. His other hundred came against North West at Sion Mills the following year. This was a well contested game, which ended in a three wicket win for the visitors who were facing a useful 238-7. Enda made 108, sharing a big first wicket stand with Malahide's Brian Gilmore (87) and though wickets fell after their departures, the victory was achieved.

His first two fifties had come in 1980. Against Ulster Town at Ormeau, he made 75, an almost lone hand against Simon Corlett and Mike Reith, as the visitors struggled to 159-7, the next highest score being Gilmore's 20. Perhaps fortunately, rain then intervened and the match was washed out.

Later in the season, he made 58* in a 9 wicket win over Munster at Cabra.

Aside from Gilmore and Neil Taylor, with whom he had several productive opening stands, he found another useful opening partner at this level in the prolific Pakistani, Alf Masood. Thus in 1982 against Ulster Country at Phoenix they put on 138 for the first wicket to enable their side to reach 202-4 declared, Enda making 60 before being caught off Dermott Monteith. The match was won by 20 runs. Against Munster at College Park, they put on 97, before Enda was out for 39, Masood going on to 119* to secure a 9 wicket win. His final half century came in a losing cause against North West in 1984. Together with Gilmore he again posted a three figure opening stand, but the rest of the batting fell away and the match was lost by 6 wickets. Enda made 64, bowled by Junior McBrine, Gilmore 73.

For Ireland he played 9 times 1981 - 1982 scoring 318 runs at 22.71 with a highest score of 80 against Wales at Rathmines in 1982. His debut came against MCC at Lords on the 1981 tour in a two day match. Facing a score of 227-4, he helped Jack Short put on 87 for the first wicket before being caught by former Test batsman and future Test umpire John Hampshire off the off breaks of Cambridge Blue Simon Doggart, whose father had played for MCC v Ireland in 1961. In the second innings he was bowled by the medium pace of Michael Mence for 8. The match ended in a draw with Ireland rather lucky to survive. A single innings match, for which caps were not awarded, against the Duchess of Norfolk's XI at Arundel followed. Perhaps inspired by the surroundings, Enda hit a brisk 60 as Ireland chased 185 for victory, the hosts having reached 184-3 thanks to a brilliant knock by future England regular Robin Smith, then a 17 year old South African schoolboy. Ireland faltered after Enda's dismissal, but a good stand by Tommy Harpur and Simon Corlett saw them home.

Enda had three good matches in the following season, his last in Irish colours. India were due to play two ODIs at Ormeau in May. The first was washed away after the visitors had reached 179-2. The following day a 50 over game was played. Ireland were 134-9 at the end of their allocation, with Enda top scoring with 50 before being caught behind off Ravi Shastri who finished with 3-20. Ravi then made as stylish 43 as the visitors won by 5 wickets. Enda, Shastri and the Indian keeper Parkar, four dismissals, were given men of the match awards.

Rain caused the MCC match at Eglinton three weeks later to be drawn, with the visitor's last pair just holding out after Simon Corlett had caused a collapse. Enda made a useful 40 in the first innings, putting on 56 for the second wicket with Robert Wills, before being stumped by Australian Mark Valetta off Don Wilson, the old Yorkshire and England slow left armer. He made a useful 21 in the second innings, being leg before to Oxford University off spinner Richard Le Q Savage.

After contributing 9 towards an opening stand of 55 with Short in the Nat West match at Northampton, he played his last notable innings for Ireland v Wales at Rathmines in late July. After failing in the first innings, in which Masood hit a brilliant 109, he helped Short put on 155 for the first wicket in the second when Ireland led 87. They were separated 6 runs short of the then first wicket record set by David Trotter and Nat Hone at Lord's in 1879, Enda finishing on 80.

Though, as we have seen, his club and interprovincial career continued for some years, he was not selected for Ireland again. He was President of the Irish Cricket Union in 1998, when, "an immense workload was carried out with great charm and humour."