Australian coach and former national player Donna Dalby (left) with Aussie wicketkeeper Dulane Carson at the 2017 World Cup in Dubai.
Australian coach and former national player Donna Dalby (left) with Aussie wicketkeeper Dulane Carson at the 2017 World Cup in Dubai.

Multiple World Cup winner in elite company


TODAY'S sporting profile features elite indoor cricketer Donna Dalby (nee Richardson).

Nicknamed Rich or Richo (short for her maiden name), Dalby achieved just about everything there is to accomplish in the sport.

Sporting achievements: I've been very fortunate to be involved in four World Cup wins as a player, two of those as captain, and another four World Cup wins as open ladies team coach. Another one was for the year I coached the junior Australian side in between finishing as a player and coaching the Australian open women's team at numerous national, state and club titles over 25 years representing Queensland as a player and coach.

Why did you get into indoor cricket? Played vigoro in Fassifern and started indoor cricket with friends in ladies and mixed competition.

Favourite teammate: Too hard to nominate one. Being very interested in the tactical side of the game, I loved talking this through with people who were like-minded (but can have differing opinions). I was quite intense so I loved those players who could make me laugh, which helped me relax a little

Favourite coach: Probably three had a huge influence on me - Greg Donnelly, Robert Taylor and Brad Zeller - while all playing their part in the game as it developed over the years. All of them believed in me perhaps when I didn't believe in myself.

What you love about the sport? It has it all, unless there is an electricity strike (way back) or COVID. It was always on, only takes a short time. It's the ultimate team game. It's dynamic and fast, and it requires skill and tactics.

Any superstitions? Early on yes, like same clothes etc. But later in my career I realised they were just that and hard work and quality practice was what really made the difference.

Sporting hero growing up: Steve Waugh - fiercely determined and made the most of the talent he was given. He knew his own game well and maximised his strengths. He has gone on to do a lot of charity work but out of the spotlight.

Do you follow the game today? Up until two years ago, I was still coaching the Australian Ladies team. I still love the game and the people in the game.

What are you up to these days? I ended up giving coaching away as work was taking up more and more of my time. I was living in Perth working for Bankwest, which until recently required a lot of travel. Also right now about to start building a home to return to on the beautiful Sunshine Coast. I have been returning to Queensland regularly over the years to visit family.

Advice to juniors: If you are doing something, give it your best shot and enjoy it. If you want to take it to the highest level, adopt quality practice, hard work and being a good teammate. Build your all-rounder skills and in indoor that doesn't just mean batting and bowling. Be able to cover all positions and bat with anybody. Finally be coachable. Choose some trusted advisors to listen to and bounce things off. Master your own game.

Quick thoughts

POSITIVE: 1. One referee. I had my doubts going back to one referee but after the first week of the NRL return, I liked what I saw. The game was faster, cleaner and was a better spectacle to watch. Lets hope it continues in the same way.

2. AFL. Fans can start to get excited as the season reboots next Thursday with reigning premiers Richmond taking on Collingwood.

3. Hall of Fame. It was great to see Brisbane Lions legends Simon Black and Jonathan Brown inducted into the AFL Hall of Fame.

Negative: 1. Titans/Dragons/Bulldogs. They struggled last weekend and if stark improvement isn't seen shortly then fans of these three clubs are going to be in for a long season. Player and coach sackings will start to simmer shortly.

2. Player contracts. Players and their agents must be smarter when signing contracts as drama has again unfolded with Raiders player John Bateman now wanting more money after signing for a set amount only last year. Contracts should only be signed for two years.

Sporting birthdays: 1. 1945 - John Carlos (champion American track and field athlete who is famous for his Black Power salute while receiving his medal).

2. 1992 - Emily Seebohm (Australian champion swimmer who has won multiple medals at the Olympics and world titles).

On this day: 1. 1952 - Boxer Jersey Joe Walcott defeats Ezzard Charles in 15 rounds to win the heavyweight title.

2. 1966 - Aussie tennis player Tony Roche wins his first and only Grand Slam tournament (French Open) by defeating Istvan Gulyas 6/1 6/4 7/5.

3. 1971 - Evonne Goolagong wins her first Grand Slam tournament by beating fellow Aussie Helen Gourlay 6/3 7/5.