Player Profiles

Peter Andrew Debut 1987 LHB LS Club statistician
Awarded pink and black blazer 2011. P.A.J.A has adapted to the modern game with relative ease. A die hard Leicester City supporter; he has now been convinced that anything is possible, and watching him in the field tends to back this up. The use of a delicately placed size 13 can have a delightful effect on a rocketing cricket ball, and having not touched his toes since the mid 80’s, he has mastered the art. In batting terms, as all coaches will advocate, he keeps it simple. The forward defensive is firm, the other option trusted is the forward attack, a huge arc swinging the heavy willow through the line of the ball. The only intent is to send the ball out of the ground….and on occasion it is successful. A bowler at heart, passed Greenhough in 2016 as the all time leading wicket taker. He uses a mix of flight, swing, drift and dip that most spinners can only dream about (when questioned he is adamantly a swing bowler) and when he hits his stride batsmen are left dreaming about what should have been. Producer of myriad Cryptic stats to the delight of everyone except our webmistress.

Richard Atkinson Debut 1987 RHB, RS
Captain 1992-94. Pink and black blazer 2010. So good a right hand bat that he barely used his left hand. Harshly remembered for scoring 2 in a total of 230-1 dec against the Federation of Zionist Youth in 1992, he was for years the club’s best batsman and remains the best slip fielder we have had. Briefly flirted with bowling under his own captaincy, took a five-fer and even tried wicket keeping. Like Denis Compton with WW2, he could claim to have been robbed of his best cricketing years while prospering in New York, returned for occasional games in middle age and still hoping for a farewell tour in 2018. Introduced the pink and black club colours in 1992, a great legacy.

Paul Bridges Debut 2008 RHB RFM – Captain 2016 –2019
Current skipper and club bunny slaughterer. Taking a page out of the selfless man’s approach to cricket manual Bridges is often known to open the bowling, open the batting and then bring himself back on at those opportune moments in the game. Equally at home with the bat and the ball (averaging 23 in both disciplines) his claim for a genuine all rounder (has a 50, fifer and a hat-trick) position is only let down by his lack of ability in the field which has led to the coining of the phrase “he’s only gone and done a Bridges”. Often seen walking the outfield with his trusty piece of paper and pen, many assumed he was a master tactician….turns out he was just trying to count past 10 when he ran out of fingers. A hard grafter and all round good lad for the team whose stats don’t always do justice to the effort put in.

Dwight Cupit Debut 2000 RHB, RS & Wicketkeeper
Cricket is a tough game, for most anyway. Sartorially written off previously due to a brown hat, blue shoes and a dodgy shirt, indeed there is a little bit of Paddington Bear about him as he cruises around the field chuckling with delight at the seeming ease of this game called cricket. Generally thrown the ball when everyone else has already failed; he always finds a way to take a wicket, and actually has the best strike rate in the club. Batting middle order, as most Cryptics tend to favour, his late cut is something to marvel. Practised religiously (his father is a vicar) while in the middle, sometime soon we are all to be treated to its successful execution. To add to his obvious talents he is quite capable behind the stumps, if required. The debate is now in full swing as to whether this great club man is an Englishman or an Australian? (Really? Try the Tebbit test – Ed)

Rod Edwards Debut 1986 LHB RM
Awarded pink and black blazer 2017. A round all-rounder, Rod will try anything on the cricket field except catching without gloves on. As a younger man, he thought he was Richard Hadlee. Following the latter’s heart attack, the resemblance is probably closer than ever.  Occasionally savage with the bat, Rod’s bowling remains his strongest suit, in spite of persistent calf strains often reducing his run-up to two paces – with no discernible effect. Rod’s heyday – Rod will tell you, seemingly endlessly – was prior to his self-imposed 1990–1997 exile, a time before records began, when he scored bags of runs and took five-wicket hauls for fun. Needless to say, he is still looking for his first five-fer in the ‘modern era’, what with all its documentary evidence and such nonsense. Tour organiser supreme, although obviously nothing else can be said about that.

Paul Goss Debut 1997 RHB LFM
Captain 2007-2011 Belatedly awarded pink and black blazer 2017. Goss is still the best left arm, Australian ginger the club has ever seen, although he doesn’t win in any of those categories individually. Appearing only rarely after his debut until he realised Cryptic cricket was more fun (and more his level) than league cricket, he has become a major Cryptic force. Five seasons as skipper, plenty more as ruthless fixture secretary, unafraid of dropping opponents who don’t meet the Cryptic criteria of being good blokes with a lovely ground and providing a first class tea. He’s a much better batsman than records suggest, as testified by a match-winning 95* at Teddington in 2015, has an excellent catch:drop ratio and his opening spells can be most economical. When they aren’t, he announces a spurious injury and withdraws from the attack until the bunnies appear so, countering his batting record, he’s a worse bowler than records suggest. Which is pretty good, passing 200 wickets in 2017 as he approaches 150 caps. Guilty of losing matches off the last ball of a match with blind stupidity on several occasions, the kind of mentality that makes him an all-embracing tourist who saves the sleeping until he gets home.

Hugh Greenway Debut 2014 RHB, relief Wicketkeeper
Hugh was recruited to the Cryptics by Tommy, quickly proving to be an excellent acquisition. Hugh became the second socialist (to admit) to play for the Cryptics. (Nonsense – Ed). He tends to have batting form in the early months of the year before tailing off near the end of the season. Hugh is always entertaining in the field and also in the match reports that he is unafraid to write. Took the role of Kittybitch to a new level in Menorca 2016 by speaking multiple languages and thus manipulating orders to suit himself.

David Grindrod Debut 2002 RHB RM
Captain 2012-15. Pink and black blazer 2017. Grinders, the unassuming geography teacher turned out to be a most assuming skipper, assuming everybody else knew where to be, when and why, both on and off the field. Equally comfortable with bat or ball, he loves hitting straight down the ground but hates having his bowling smacked back past him, loves tucking into slow bowlers but uses his (even) slower ball as a lethal weapon. Confused? So is he. David’s spectacular Cryptic century at Woking in 2007 was as opener; he also holds the club record (71) for a No.11 in a partnership of 119 with son, Ed, though he lost us the game, being last man out. He took his first five wicket haul in his 139th game, then another in his 142nd and now sits one decent spell away from 200 wickets, and near the top of every achievement list there is. Genuine club stalwart restricted to two tours due to his line of work, but made a tremendous contribution on both trips.

Ed Grindrod Debut 2011 LHB OS
Senior member of the new generation of Cryptics youth. Bowls some quality off spin at speeds faster than his old man’s quicker ball, so is unlikely to have to wait as long for a Michelle. Scored a maiden 50 at Claygate 2015, batting unlike most Cryptics just as well after lunch as before, as too young to participate in the post lunch port. Nearly got another at Oxshott a year later, but had to make do with being part of new 10th wicket club record partnership with his Dad.

James Grindrod Debut 2014 LHB OS
Keener even than his Dad. Happy to bat, bowl, score, umpire and, fortunately, field. Will score runs in the future if not tired himself out playing for all his other outfits. Joined a select bunch of Cryptics by getting a wicket with his first delivery and has inherited from his mother the knack of ‘good shopping’.

Stu Henniker-Smith Debut 2013 RHB, RM
Many think Stu only gets a game because the skipper is married to his sister. The truth is that his brother-in-law was only made skipper to get Stu to play more. He is by far the better tourist, club man and Freddie Mercury impersonator. An excellent change bowler, particularly as it allows ‘bro’ a break until the children come into bat. He is a capable batsman when the ball is in his slot and will always be in the top 10 when it comes to selection. A genuine asset to our club.

James Hogben Debut 1997 RHB
Best playing his strokes at the top of the order, he prefers to score his runs in boundaries and dislikes being called for singles and twos by others. Threes are simply not on. A good fielder if the ball is hit straight to him, James is also the club’s only vegetarian and one of our heaviest players. Finally got his majestic ton (120* including 21 fours and one three) at Claygate 2012, fifteen years and 118 appearances after his previous career best 95 on the same ground. Quiet but constant for almost a generation, James has over 3000 runs and in 2017 became the sixth player to reach 150 caps. Natasha, Queen of Cryptic WAGs, must have watched more Cryptic games than anyone in history, poor woman.

Charles ‘Tommy’ Hope-Dunbar Debut 2003 RHB RM Wicketkeeper
Universally known as “Tommy” for, inter alia, his insatiable appetite for ketchup or “The Laird” as he owns half of Scotland (the unpopulated half), Tommy has built a fine Cryptic batting career based on a sound technique mixed with a good eye and some powerful hitting. Tommy is an excellent fielder and taken some blinding catches especially up close and has successfully turned to keeping wicket in desperate times. His bowling is unremarkable but occasionally lucky. A batting average superior to his bowling average hints at allrounder status but without a “Michelle” to his name he is just a batsman who bowls a bit. A Scotsman through and through, without the accent or the kilt but with all the whisky he is a true Cryptic and a fine example to Jocks everywhere.

Tom Hufton RHB RFM
Known as “Tommy Gunn” as he manages to bowl straight and quick – which at our level is surprisingly effective, normally turns out for 1 or 2 games a season and his best are 2-17 of 8 overs. For someone who has played cricket his whole life he is still very afraid of a cricket ball and catching therefore involves a great deal of fear initially, followed by surprise if he manages to hold on to it.

Chris Muldoon Debut 2013 RHB RM
Given our experience with New Zealanders in the team (see Rod’s profile) Chris is a really good guy. Having dusted off the boots in mid-life after a long break from cricket, he has slipped seamlessly in the squad. He is a relaxed team player, reliable increasingly seen as a bowler with best figures of 2-33. He has batted in a variety of positions from opening to batting out for the draw. We feel that his best days are still to come with the Cryptics.

Seb Roberts Debut 2016 RHB, RF
Known as “Boom Boom” when playing and “12 Gins” when not, if you throw in liability and Australian you can pretty much say no more – Introduced by Goss as emergency tour replacement for PAJA in 2016 – he has massive shoulders and if he hits it, it stays hit. In one brief innings he got 26 of 7 balls before missing a straight one. He can bowl extremely quickly but not always at the stumps leading to keepers with bruised hands and sore bodies from all the diving. He is not necessarily the brightest import having had to call the Fire brigade to get him out of a bedroom!

James Scott Debut 2004 LHB, LS
With nearly 100 caps for the Cryptics; over 3000 runs at an average of over 50; 6 hundreds; over 50 wickets and 50 catches, Scottie’s statistics speak for themselves. Once he has arrived at games (invariably late; especially when the ground is close to his home!) he always makes a contribution. His diminutive stature means he can provide a worm’s eye view of pitch conditions. He is never one to hold back on advice for his colleagues; usually just after they are out. However, Scottie’s true strength was demonstrated on the 2016 tour to Menorca, where he umpired unchanged due to injury and ensured legend status by carrying a huge tray full of goldfish bowl sized gins, uphill and into the wind, to the hotel from a local bar after the hotel bar shut. AKA Terry F**kwit.

Richard Seeckts Debut 1991 RHB RS
Captain 1996-2006; 2020-present. Awarded pink and black blazer 2007. Joining in 1991, Richard was attracted to the Cryptics by the prospect of guaranteed first team cricket. The fact that there was only one team did not diminish his enthusiasm. He donned the skipper’s mantle in 1996 and the positions of fixture secretary and treasurer were soon added to his burgeoning Cryptic CV. Richard is the main reason the club survives today, and the introduction of son Toby augers well for the future. It has also hinted at some previously unsuspected cricketing ability being passed on through the maternal line.  While Richard’s commitment to the SCCC cause remains matchless, his stints at first slip were often catchless, hence he can now more often than not be seen trotting round the outfield like a show pony – at a glue factory convention. Always ready and willing to bat or bowl wherever and whenever necessary, if not advisable, his primary desire is to play enjoyable cricket in the right spirit. Very Cryptic and something that others could learn from.

Toby Seeckts Debut 2013 LHB Wicketkeeper
The scarcity of players around millennium time set the then skipper on a mission to produce the next generation of Cryptics. Toby’s nativity was the (only male) result, 10 years after that of a chap called Stokes, with whom he has nothing in common beyond a birthday, left-handedness and a desire to hit sixes. Toby took a wicket with his first ball on debut, aged 12, became the youngest Cryptic wicketkeeper aged 14 years 3 days in 2015 and a year later shared the all time record 4th wicket partnership of 151 with Scottie at Shackleford. With 23 caps before his GCSE results, he’s made a significant dent in the average age and can fling the ball in from distances older Cryptics can’t see, let alone remember.

Keith Taylor Debut 2004 RHB
Keith made his 1000th Cryptic run in the 2017 season, many of which were cut or slashed behind square on the offside although he does also possess an elegant on-drive. His performance on the field and his demeanour off it often depend on whether he has had his ‘breakfast’… His bowling is rarely seen other than in nets although he could have taken a wicket in Menorca if Cryptics could hold their catches. He is a belligerent contributor to the club WhatsApp group.

Tom Ware Debut 1997 RHB Wicketkeeper Umpire Leg Spinner
One of our better fielders, ‘Puppy’ would chase a ball anywhere, anytime in younger days. Still very keen to play an active part in proceedings, usually with the gloves on, however age is beginning to catch up. Previously suggested that he required work on his batting and bowling – it has yet to reap dividends, and his best way of accumulating Cryptic runs is during his long, and rarely quiet umpiring stints……never is a no-ball more loudly called (and with glee!) His innings are never dull, rarely long and often memorable. He’s quick between the wickets, slower on the walk back to the pavilion.

Philip Wright Debut 1985 RHB Occasional donkey drops
Awarded pink and black blazer 2009. ”Pippa” is the ageless, long established opening batsman that every successful club needs. Clouds of smoke trail behind him as he walks to the crease, and usually more once he departs after playing the anchor role. Some days it’s priceless, others worthless, invariably it leaves the middle order with one challenge or another, thereby ensuring others get ample opportunity. While his batting is from the pre-T20 era, it takes much more than luck to score 7000 runs, especially when so few of them come in boundaries. Over 30 years of commitment, most games played, most runs by a mile, most catches and no sign of fading. His speed between the wickets is matched by great agility and some stunning catches at gully, putting far younger men to shame in both departments. Been on every tour, so a few roomies are now aware of his nocturnal routines. Once took five wickets, all of which were caught on the midwicket boundary.

Gone but not forgotten

Figures on top line indicate years of first and last game, caps, total runs @ average, total wickets @ average. Stats only for games since 1990.

Greg Andrell 1987-2006 75 caps 2653@49.1 No wickets 47ct/22st as wicketkeeper
A rarity among Cryptics, Greg is actually quite good at cricket. A compact opening batsman capable of launching vicious assaults on opposition bowling, he combines this with the ability to make stumpings most would never attempt, while eschewing others, presumably for being too easy. Now domiciled ‘up north’, he is too rarely seen, with his prowess fast approaching folklore status. Nevertheless, Greg certainly scored a few good hundreds and several nineties over the years, most memorably 97*, when, with four needed to win, his old school mate Edwards clouted a boundary to leave him stranded and save him the cost of a jug. Kiwis to the core both.

Mark Blamphin 1992-2006 66 caps 81@6.8 82@24.5
More wickets than runs for the club sums it up, though his most memorable moment may be the six over the road that prompted the declaration at Headley 1997, a game for the ages. A Blamphers day was never dull, be it for explaining his occasional drinking injuries, driving from Northampton to Havant for one over or once taking 7-81 with his loopy medium pacers when he was the only recognised bowler. Countered our Aussie contingent by marrying one of theirs and moving to Melbourne, where he’s rearing youngsters and attending SCCC (South) functions at the MCG.

James Brooke-Webb 1991-2010 59 caps 647@15.8, 18@30.8
Somewhat gentlemanly for a Cryptic dressing room, JB-W’s talent shone brightest in the famous win at Claygate 2000. Extract from the match report:
“139 from 14 overs when the balding property guru sauntered to the wicket with the captain’s wise recommendation to ‘treat it as a net, we haven’t got a hope now’, ringing in his ears.
Brooke-Webb responded by setting about the Claygate bowlers with a brutal display. The footwork was all Thompson, the middling of ball after ball was not. Unworried by some attempted hostile bowling, and hugely assisted by PAJ Andrew who got the sniff of Claygate blood too, a close draw looked likely with 54 still needed from 4 overs. No problem if you take 24 off the first of those, PAJ carving two mammoth cowshots for 6 in succession. With only 30 needed from 18 balls, the crowd began to leave, realising that the home side were doomed. Aware that without victory the partnership would have been pointless, our men finished the task in style with a thundering heave onto the basketball court and 2 balls to spare.“
James dutifully produced three sons before inconsiderately moving to Taunton in recent times.

Gavin Cooper 2010-2017 70 caps 221@7.6 No wickets 49ct/19st as wicketkeeper
Joined without telling anyone he was a wicketkeeper, not taking the gloves until a vacancy appeared, which was pretty magnanimous considering he couldn’t bat, bowl or field. Turned out to be a solid, reliable and committed asset to the club, if a touch aesthetically challenged as a ‘keeper by the wreckage that was once a knee. Denied the chance to top ‘keeping records by a move to Somerset where the cider is cheap and, seemingly, the cricket of a low enough standard for him to join a new club. Daughter Sophie also a Cryptic.

Paul Dickson 1981-2007 35 caps 459@18.3 55@18.0
Captain 1988-91. A walking Wisden since childhood, it’s a shame he didn’t memorise pre-1990 Cryptic statistics before the Great Fire of Penner Close destroyed them with, of course, most of his runs and wickets. Would doubtless have played 300 games had he not gone to America in the 1990’s, returning only for regular ales and the odd Test match. Still a Cryptic to the core.

David Gazzola 2006-10 24 caps 413@29.5 10@20.4
‘Giz’ made a big impact in a short career, ended by shoulder injuries, several children in quick succession and, ultimately, a return to his native Melbourne. Shares the record 5th wicket stand with Scottie, his contribution a dynamic 58 on a day his on-drive was likened to that of Mark Waugh. Tour loony in Ljubljana 2007, introducing ‘mishmash’, a red wine and fanta mix, to Cryptic palates.

Jimmy Greenhough circa 1979-2013 142 caps 602@11.2 254@21.9
Awarded pink and black blazer 2009. Probably the longest serving Cryptic. Former wild man and former paceman in days no-one, least of all Jimmy, can remember. Spent the second half of his career lobbing up grenades with considerable success, topping the post 1990 wicket takers list until PAJA overtook in 2016. Off the field his musical talent shone at every dinner or tour opportunity and he remains the only Cryptic able to recite ‘The Lion and Albert’ in its entirety. Son Charlie also a Cryptic.

Ross Greenwood 1999-2003 34 caps 374@18.7 72@12.0
Top bowler from the day he arrived from Richmond CC (Melbourne) in 1999 with Macca. Missed to 2000 Oporto tour having failed to get a visa but made it to Menorca 2002 for his swansong. Then arranged SCCC v Mosman Vets in Sydney 2003 as another one. Best sledge: describing an upcoming Headley game as a ‘grudge match’ on Radio 5Live’s ‘Wake up to Money’ slot. By no means the first cricketer to be lured from England by Packer’s wonga, but the only Cryptic. Proudly wears the pink and black while broadcasting on Channel 9.

James MacDonald 1999-2003 27 caps 1109@50.4 10@20.0
Returned to his native Melbourne after 2001 season, his final game being one of two notable English team wins in Australia in November 2003 that took his average over 50. Arguably the best lefty we’ve ever had, ask Greg and Scottie. Huge contribution in his short time in England, recruited like crazy, bowled a bit and took his turn with the gloves when required. Unlike several of his Cryptic countrymen, he went home, married one of his own and produced a trio of daughters. Leader of SCCC (South) events to wear the pink and black at the MCG.

Andrew McLoughlin 2001-2005 20 caps 486@28.6 47@11.0
Nephew of Cryptic legend Mark McLoughlin, the Cryptic Kallis with a lunatic streak whose legacy was to lose us the Tilford fixture by injuring their fixtures chap in poor light one September. Consequently deported to remote North Queensland and tamed by family life and 200 miles to the nearest pub. Best knocks 88 v Cedars in 2002 and 71 v Bounders 2003 to bring off spectacular wins. Dangerous company at social functions.

Mark McLoughlin 1981-2005 100 caps 109@4.7 128@23.0
Mark has been around since well before records began, had a spell as skipper in the 1980s and still never misses a dinner or drinking night. Regularly bowled all afternoon when captains had fewer options and/or less imagination and became irascible if then sent in at 7.20pm to play for a draw. Announced his retirement in 2000, 2002 and finally in 2005. (Hardly) used a Doug Walters autograph bat. Utterly committed ‘father of the Cryptics’.

Nick Pow 1998-2014 46 caps 165@15 47@25.2
The only Cryptic bowler to have been carted onto his own bedroom balcony (Oporto 2000). Pioneer of the vital role of tour kittybitch and much better bowler than Greenwood’s description, “like a dying horse” suggested. Drifted off into managing colts cricket for a son who is much better.

James Streeter 1999-2016 23 caps 593@28.2 6 @27.3
Big Jim, 6’11”, much more charming than he looks, talented bat who should have played more. Best day 112 at Claygate 2004 after seven drops and a missed stumping on 99. Noted player of the ‘bagpipes’ at Dinners. Once met, never forgotten.

Andrew Thompson 1979 – 2002 94 caps 1390@18.3 4@15.3
As captain in 1995, tried in vain to make cricket a nine-a-side game, which often gave the opposition the upper hand. A hard act to follow when we resumed trying to find 11 players per game. A true Cryptic legend, purveyor and subject of more unprintable tales than most, whose pre-1990 80-odd at Lloyds Register is still improving in the telling. Had a good eye, and a useless one, with evident mixed results. Nipped off to Scandanavia when it seemed wise, returning occasionally until acquiring the status of Oldest Cryptic to Become a Father.