With the 2022/23 season having drawn to a close for the Echidnas, we’ve got our first Past Player Profile of 2023 as we’re taking a look back at the wonderful career of long-time WCC player and Life Member Robin Crompton – a.k.a. “Pud”. Pud started his career in the 1960s for the Mt Barker Whites side and is also a legend of the Mount Barker Cricket Club where he played for 20-odd seasons.
Eventually lured away to the Hill to play A Grade for the 1982/83 season, Pud intended that to be his final season before retiring. After a slow start, Pud compiled 364 runs @ 33.09 including his WCC career high of 147 against Macclesfield at the Hill. Incredibly, Pud was one of four Wistow batters to score over 300 runs with an average above 30 that season so it is perhaps unsurprising that the A’s went on to win the Premiership.
Quickly forgetting any plans of retirement, Pud remained a regular player for another 18 seasons before eventually retiring at the end of the 2000/01 season at almost 54 years of age – although he would continue to play as a “fill in” sporadically thereafter with his last match coming in December 2010 – just a lazy 27 years after his initial retirement plans!
For most of his WCC career Pud was a stoic opening batter, continuing to be a mainstay in the A Grade until 1993/94, when he then began to play in the B’s and then C’s, as he would go on to win another Premiership in the C Grade in 1997/98 before finishing his career by playing together with son Luke Crompton – a.k.a. “Pieman” – for a number of games in each of the 1999/00 and 2000/01 seasons.
Pud’s best season at Wistow was probably the 1987/88 season when he scored 403 runs in A Grade at 36.64 – a season in which he made at least double figures every time he batted (all as an opener too). He also scored over 400 runs in each of his final two full seasons (in C Grade) – 493 runs @ 27.39 in 1999/00 and 422 runs @ 30.14 in 2000/01. Another fun fact – in more than 215 innings for Wistow, Pud was dismissed LBW just twice.
Officially, Pud has played 193 matches for Wistow, scoring 4,726 runs @ 23.05 with 2 centuries and a whopping 20 fifties. However, to date only partial stats have been able to be recovered for several seasons in which Pud played, such that he undoubtedly played over 200 matches for Wistow and he may well have crossed the 5,000 run milestone too. As it stands, Pud has scored the 5th most runs in club history and is inside the top 15 for most seniors matches played – quite incredible when you consider that he also played nearly 20 seasons at the MBCC!
These days, Pud of course remains active on the local cricketing scene, having been an excellent umpire for the Alexandra & Eastern Hills Cricket Association for the last 10 plus seasons and during our 2021/22 end of season presentation luncheon he received a plaque from the SACA for 50 years of service to local cricket – well done Pud!