Born in Ouyen, Victoria, Ruth Dow began her first class career with South Australia and made her Test debut in 1957/8 against New Zealand.
A right hand batter and right-arm slow bowler, her performances for her club team, University, ultimately saw Ruth selected to play for South Australia on the back of some colossal batting. (It is believed that Ruth scored the first triple century in club cricket in Australia.)
Selected for the 1951 tour of England, Ruth did not play a Test but did participate in the tour games. However, even that wasn’t much of a hit out, batting after Joyce Schmidt, Amy Hudson, Mollie Dive, Una Paisley, Betty Wilson… Ruth was definitely on tour as a back-up.
Australia played no Test cricket until 1956/57 and Ruth was selected in Una Paisley’s team to play the visiting New Zealand team in Adelaide. She opened the batting and scored 58 runs and shared in a 96 run partnership with her captain. With the ball, Ruth took 3-26 and 2-43 with the home team winning by an innings.
When England toured the following season in 1957/58, Ruth played in the famous “Betty Wilson Test”. The 5 runs she scored was only second to Wilson’s 12 as Australia were bowled out for 38. In the second innings as England held on for a nail-biting draw, Ruth Dow took 4-21 bowling in tandem with Betty Wilson (4-9).
Ruth played in the following Test and then withdrew for the final encounter, unable to play. In her three match career, Ruth scored 120 runs at 30.00 with the 58 against the White Ferns her top score. With the ball she took 10 wickets at 17.70 with a best of 4-21.