Foxes Flashback - David Constant
David Constant (born 9th November, 1941)
David played for Leicestershire for four seasons. In his second season he scored over 600 runs with a top score of 80, but though he scored heavily for both the second XIs of Kent and Leicestershire, he never became an established member of the team. So, at the young age of 27, having spent 10 years at the fringe of First-Class cricket he became an umpire.
For the next 38 seasons his slight figure became a familiar sight on the First-Class county grounds. He rapidly rose to the top, and he was still under 30 when he umpired his first test.
In all, he ‘stood’ in 657 first class matches, which is amazingly not a record, for Frank Chester who was badly injured in the First World War holds that with over 700. In addition David stood in 648 one day matches, which means he umpired an amazing 1,305 matches played between First-Class sides, nearly a hundred more than the second on the list, Alan Whitehead of Somerset.
In all, David played 54 matches for Leicestershire, scoring 1,390 runs, with that top score of 80, made during a 5th wicket partnership of 152 with Peter Marner. On his debut against Oxford University he scored a brace of 50's, sharing opening century partnerships on each occasion. Perhaps his most remarkable innings was the 9* he scored (out of an all out total of 40) on a spiteful pitch at Grace Road in 1965, where he withstood the pace of Jeff Jones who returned an analysis of 8 for 11. According to Glamorgan and England captain, Tony Lewis, it was the bravest innings he had ever seen.
After retiring from playing cricket he became a county bowler, representing both Gloucestershire and Somerset.