Wendy Reynolds is director of sport at Heathfield School in Ascot and has represented England at international lacrosse.
She is the only women to have played, coached, umpired and officiated at the Lacrosse World Cup, receiving the honour of Umpire Emeritus from the Federation of International Lacrosse in September 2017.
What school (s) did you go to?
St. Helen’s School in Northwood, Middlesex
What’s your earliest sporting memory?
I fondly remember playing tennis with my father as we were lucky enough to have a club five minutes from our house. I also remember playing football for the Cubs as well as the excitement of going to Old Trafford with my father!
Who were your sporting heroes growing up?
Tennis champions Bjorn Borg, Martina Navratilova and Bryan Robson the English football manager and former player.
What are your best and worst sporting memories of school?
Two of my best sporting memories are playing tennis at Queens Club in the National Finals of the Aberdare Cup and completing the 10 Tors challenge over a May weekend in Dartmoor.
The worst memory is not being selected for the Territorial lacrosse team despite trialling for 3 years in a row!
Can you recall a memorable sporting teacher?
PE teachers at all my schools played a large part in my school life, however, Louise Stone (nee Fitzroy) who played lacrosse for Scotland had the strongest impact on me. She started work at St Helen’s when I was in the sixth form. She was a brilliant role model for me as I too wanted to represent my country. She kindly practiced with me at every available opportunity.
What sports do you play these days?
My favourite sport is running as it gives me an opportunity to take my two black Labradors out. I find running is a great way to relieve stress and it also stops me over thinking things. I have successfully completed two marathons and raised money for cancer charities. I also play tennis when I have time.
In what other ways do you stay healthy?
I like to unwind by playing the piano to help my mental well-being. I passed grade 8 when I was at school but let it fall by the wayside when I left. I rediscovered the joys of music when I joined Heathfield.
What is your favourite sporting memory?
It’s hard to pick one favourite memory as I’ve been lucky enough to have a few. My top memories including saying the official’s Oath at the start of the 2017 World Cup held in Guildford and being awarded an International Emeritus for my contribution to lacrosse. I also fondly remember queuing overnight on the steps to Wembley Stadium for FA Cup replay tickets to watch Manchester United play against Crystal Palace – a match that United won!
What’s been your most embarrassing sporting moment?
As an International lacrosse umpire, I was ‘taken out’ (knocked down) by a player in a World Cup final, much to the amusement of my fellow umpires and the England National team who were watching, many of whom are my close friends.
What’s your biggest sporting bug bear?
It has to be the lack of sportswomen who make the back pages of the newspapers.
When was the last time you cried at a sporting event?
This is a hard one! I think it was during and after completing the Edinburgh Marathon. I ran the race 3 weeks after running the London Marathon. Mentally it was extremely tough and I realised about half way round I had injured my back but was determined to finish whatever. I think I cried for about 8 miles on and off. I am not a natural runner but I was raising money for charity so I wanted to finish. It took me a year before I was could run again!
Which three sports people would you like to have around for dinner and why?
Wimbledon tennis commentator the late Dan Maskell - his commentary was fabulous and his knowledge second to none. I would also invite Sir Alex Fergusson to find out how he managed to be so successful year after year and to understand what it feels like to be the most successful British football manager. I would love to know what motivated him for all those years in charge of one of the biggest clubs in the world. The third person I would invite to supper would be Jess Ennis-Hill - what a great role model for young girls to aspire to be like – an elite athlete and a mother who also managed the nation’s pressure of being the face of the 2012 Olympic Games.
MY SPORTING LIFE