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 County Clare.[6][7] O'Reilly's father

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Join date : 2010-12-03

PostSubject: County Clare.[6][7] O'Reilly's father   Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:32 pm

Of Irish descent, O'Reilly's paternal grandfather Peter emigrated from Ulster in 1865. Arriving in Sydney, he had been a policeman for four years in Ireland and continued in this line of work in New South Wales. After a period, he was sent to Deniliquin in the Riverina, where he settled and married another Irish immigrant from County Clare.[6][7] O'Reilly's father, Ernest, was a schoolteacher and moved around the areas surrounding the Murray River to study and teach; he cycled 650 km on dirt tracks to exams.[8] O'Reilly's mother Mina was of mixed Irish and Welsh descent, of a third generation family from Adelaide.[9] O'Reilly was born in the opal mining town of White Cliffs, New South Wales. Ernest had been appointed to open the first school in the town,[6][10] and had helped to build the school and its furniture himself.[11] Bill was the fourth child in the family, with two elder brothers and a sister.[8]
O'Reilly's cricket skills were largely self-taught; his family moved from town to town whenever his father was posted to a different school, he had little opportunity to attend coaching. He learned to play with his brothers, playing with a "gum-wood bat and a piece of banksia root chiselled down to make a ball."[10] He learned to bowl because his older brothers dominated the batting rights. His bowling action was far from the classic leg spin bowler's run-up and delivery, indeed, according to Wisden, "he was asked to make up the numbers in a Sydney junior match and, with a method that at first made everyone giggle, whipped out the opposition".[1][10] From a young age, O'Reilly was a tall and gangly player.[12]

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County Clare.[6][7] O'Reilly's father
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