If you are lucky enough to spend time in the company of Cricket Scotland’s President-Elect Sue Strachan this summer you will find out first hand just how excited she is to be involved in a “dynamic and inclusive” sport in this country going forward.
Sue, probably one of the most enthusiastic and engaging characters you are likely to meet on a boundary rope during the 2019 season, was voted in as President-Elect of the governing body at the AGM during March.
She will become the first female President of the governing body in 140 years in March 2020 and, after she had recovered from the initial shock of being put forward for the role, Sue now cannot wait to get ever more involved in a sport which she has grown to love over the last seven years.
“It really is an amazing time to be involved in cricket in Scotland and I am privileged to be part of that,” she stated.
“When I was growing up I played hockey, netball and tennis at school along with other sports, anything that had a ball or a bat really with squash really pushing through and becoming one that I focused on.
“After university I gave up all sport for a while and only came back to it a few years ago when I was nearly 40 – and I am so glad I did.
“At first I came back to squash because it had been the sport I had been best at [being in the Scotland under-19 squad at 17] and then I started to play hockey again as I began to love sport and being active all over again.
“I had forgotten just how much I loved to be involved in sport and I had forgotten how team sports and individual sports ticked different boxes in my head.
“In an individual sport there is only me I can really on and I go out there against the world whilst in a team sport, I just love being part of a team that works hard together, trains well together and wins and loses together with all that that entails.”
It was Sue’s work in the medical profession and a growing family which saw her step back from sport all those years ago, but in the last few years it has been full steam ahead and, as well as playing, she has also started to gain experiences at boardroom level, such as with Scottish Women’s Football Association.
Sue explained: “Dumfries is a multi-sport club so when there were discussions going on to start up a women’s and girls’ cricket section I was keen to be involved.
“I would have played cricket when I was younger, but the opportunity didn’t arise, so it has now been great to see my daughter go on and play the game at a high level [she earned 2 senior Scotland caps] and I have been involved in the sport since 2012.
“I had done work with women’s and girls’ football before and I enjoy being a bit of a pioneer and really helping things to build up and grow.
“I enjoy playing cricket, very much at a lclub level, but I can bat a bit and have been involved as women’s captain and convener in the last few years at Dumfries. I also play midweek cricket as part of a mixed team, The Health Pros.
“Then I was put forward to become a member of the Cricket Scotland board in 2016 and I have loved being part of the growth of women’s and girls’ cricket in this country.
“Cricket Scotland is such a dynamic organisation and it has developed and grown so much in the last few years.
“We now have some form of cricket for everyone no matter your age, your gender or your ability and that is hugely exciting.
“Men’s and women’s cricket is growing as are initiatives like the All Stars programme for five to eight year olds, the ‘CricHIIT’ programme, the tapeball leagues and the ‘Wicketz’ work that Ammar Ashraf is leading in the west.
“Seeing the way the leadership team work within Cricket Scotland and being a part of that has been great and so to now be president-elect is amazing.
“To be nominated was a huge surprise, I was flattered that they thought I had the skillset to do the job and I am just so excited about the next few years.
“I think we are involved in one of the most dynamic and inclusive sports around and that is why I want to be part of it.
“As part of the CSHL board since 2016 I have seen the passion for the game shine through at clubs and hubs all around the country.
“Some people might be surprised at my nomination as President-Elect because I know historically people in the role tend to have played at a high level themselves, but I think I have been brought in for my skills and my life experiences in and out of the sporting environment rather than for my cricketing abilities.
“I can bring my experiences from football and squash, my experiences from being a parent of sporting children, my experiences of setting up a new cricket team and trying to get enough players to make up a team for matches and also now my experience of managing the Scotland Women’s team when they play in the ICC World Cup Qualifiers to the table.
“I have that drive and enthusiasm that comes from coming back to sport after missing it for so long whilst I am also acutely aware of the health benefits of getting people of all ages active.
“Cricket is just a wonderful sport with a wonderful community in Scotland.”