Nance Clements's banner
Above: The scoreboard banner from Nance Clements's debut for Victoria against England at the MCG in 1934. Photo: George Serras.
Australian batswoman Nance Clements made her debut for Victoria against a touring English side on 7 December 1934 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). Clements scored 21 not out in a match dominated by the English.
At the end of the match, Clements approached the ground's attendant and asked if she could keep the scoreboard banner bearing her name as a memento of the match. Until the development of electronic scoreboards, players' names were painted on large sheets of black cotton which were then nailed onto wooden planks and placed in the scoreboard by an attendant.
The MCG attendant was in an unusually generous mood, perhaps because he was retiring, and he handed over the banner. Clements discovered that her name was painted on one side and 'LARWOOD' on the other.
The MCG had apparently reused the banners from the previous year's infamous bodyline series, during which the attacking deliveries of English pace bowler Harold Larwood had almost caused a riot.
Left: Nance Clements poses in her cricket uniform in 1937. In the 1930s the women's uniforms included culottes and white stockings. Photo: George Serras.
Left: English captain Joy Partridge signs Nance Clements's bat, Melbourne, 1934. Courtesy: National Library of Australia, nla.pic-vn3249292-v.