Cricket has been played throughout Australia by women and girls since 1874, with organised competitions at state level being played since the early 1900s and national level since 1930-31.
The South Australian Women’s Cricket Association, formed in the early 1930’s was pivotal in organised sport. Central to their work was the formation of the Women’s A Grade, as well as in later years, the development of the Scorpions, South Australia’s women’s senior team. A number of SAWCA A Grade players went on to represent the Scorpions as well as Australia, proving the competition was one of the best in the country.
Women's A Grade
||Port Adelaide |
Grounds, funding, and facilities were all overseen by SAWCA with one of their main achievements, in conjunction with the Women’s Memorial Play Fields Trust, being the development of the Women’s Memorial Playing Fields, a venue dedicated to women’s sport in SA, particularly cricket.
The Women’s Memorial Playing Fields were established in 1953 to address the lack of sporting facilities for women and girls and were dedicated to the nurses who were massacred by the Japanese on Bangka Island during World War II. The memorial service held in February each year is in honour of the Australian Service Women of both World Wars, particularly those who were killed on Bangka Island. The Memorial Playing Fields are an important part of the heritage of women’s cricket in South Australia, and each year SACA, on behalf of women’s cricket in the state, receives a grant from the Women’s Memorial Playing Fields Trust.
As cricket throughout Australia grew in profile, there became an ever increasing need to make all formats of cricket better structured and resourced, including women’s cricket. Therefore over a two year period both the South Australian Cricket Association and SAWCA worked side by side to better meet the growing needs of female cricketers in the state. In 2005, the SACA completed the merger of the two entities and took formal ownership of all women’s grade and state cricket, both increasing the professionalism of the sport as well as providing more opportunities for its female participants.
Women’s cricket in South Australia is indebted to the countless number of volunteers and past players who paved the way for future generations. SACA proudly recognises the rich history of the SAWCA and acknowledges its life members:
Wendy Blunsden Nora Bowman
Mavis Burke * Pam Donaldson*
Bev Fellows Annette Fellows
Vicki Freer Chris Garwood
Carmel Gifford Jan Hinkly
June Ingham* Kathy Leak
Andrea McCauley May Mills*
Joyce Ogg* Marlene Pressley
Bette Radford Ruth Stevens