It should be no surprise that Wendy Bramley was honoured as the KwaZulu-Natal Cricket Union’s Scorer of the Year at their recent awards evening.
Bramley has been involved in cricket for the better part of three decades after starting scoring from the age of eight. The Durban-based scorer has a long and illustrious career which includes every Test match at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead since readmission.
“My mother got me involved in scoring to keep me occupied during my brother’s cricket matches,” Bramley reflected.
“I couldn’t write at the time so my mother would write the names of the players and I would do the scoring from there.
“When I started moving up the ranks I was scoring KZN Schools games and SA Schools games when I was at school, and then continued up to provincial and national games.
“My first taste of international cricket was Mike Gatting’s Rebel Tour in 1990.
“I scored at the 2003 Cricket World Cup and also enjoyed the IPL when it was hosted in South Africa – the list is endless,” she said with a smile.
Scorers are the true unsung heroes at cricket matches. They spend all their time in the background d and receive very little praise for their hard work, so it is not surprising Bramley believes that scorers are a selfless, passionate group of cricket lovers.
“We do this for the love of the game. We are part of an incredible team of people and instead of receiving more recognition it would be great for people to understand the immense pressure that we are under to get it 100% right.
“T20 cricket provides a huge amount of pressure due to the intensity and speed of the game.
“We have an incredible team here in KZN which does make scoring a little bit easier but the pressure element is always there,” she highlighted.
35 years in any career is a more than impressive feat and considering that Bramley’s involvement is not full-time, her future in scoring might involve less time at the desk but she doesn’t have any plans to retire from the game.
“I try not to be involved in every game played, but if we are short then I will take over. It is tough to leave my family for long periods over weekends and with work commitments I have become a master of juggling my diary to fit everyone and everything in.”
It is a tough job being a cricket scorer, many hours on the side of a cricket field, but Bramley believes that if it is your passion then it is worth being prepared to work hard at it.
“Scoring takes just as much practice as playing the game and the pressure is just as intense when you have to make sure you get it 100% correct.
“If scoring is something that interests you then you must practice as much as possible and get involved in scoring at schools or, better yet, at club level.
“You also need to be prepared to be the ‘unsung hero’,” Bramley explained.