Buster Nupen

Cricket Player

1902 – 1977


Who was Buster Nupen?

Eiulf Peter "Buster" Nupen was a cricketer who played in 17 Test matches for South Africa between 1921–22 and 1935–36.

A tall, strongly built fast-medium bowler relying chiefly upon an off-cutter but able to vary it with a poorly disguised ball that spun the other way, Nupen was a deadly bowler on the matting pitches on which cricket was played in South Africa when he began his first-class career. So deadly was his lift and break when it bit into the mat that Nupen had the astonishing record in Currie Cup matches of 184 wickets for 12.75 each for Transvaal.

Yet, in 1924, when on his remarkable record at home Nupen was expected to be a major force in England, he was so ineffective on the closely cut grass pitches that he averaged in an exceedingly wet summer 29.55 for 29 wickets. Though injuries did handicap him, he was so harmless when fit on even the most treacherous turf pitches that he did not once take five wickets in an innings.

Consequently, Nupen was never considered for a tour again even though, on the remaining matting pitches at home, his bowling was invariably quite deadly against all but the most skilled batsmen. The skill of English batting in the 1920s can be seen in Ernest Tyldesley's brilliant innings against Nupen turning the ball back several inches and lifting groin-high during the 1927/1928 tour. Two years before that, again a team of about "England A" strength taken by Lord Tennyson, Nupen's bowling was so deadly in four Representative Matches than he took 37 wickets for under 12 runs each.

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Jan 1, 1902
South Africa
  • South Africa
Jan 29, 1977

on July 23, 2013


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