COMP­TON’S PAS­SION ISN’T JUST CRICKET

Western Daily Press (Saturday) - - Front Page - RICHARD BACHE news@west­erndai­ly­press.co.uk

CRICK­ETER Nick Comp­ton’s range of shots as an ac­com­plished top-or­der bats­man for Som­er­set earned him 16 Test caps for Eng­land.

But it is with a dif­fer­ent type of shot that he is hop­ing to forge a postre­tire­ment ca­reer.

Comp­ton, grand­son of the leg­endary Denis, is stag­ing an ex­hi­bi­tion of his photography at a top Mayfair gallery.

He is not the first West cricket to seek so­lace in art while on a long win­ter tour.

Whereas Glouces­ter­shire wick­et­keeper bats­man Jack Rus­sell, who owns a suc­cess­ful gallery in Chip- ping Sod­bury, al­ways packed his wa­ter­colours and easel for an over­seas Eng­land tour, Comp­ton reached for his cam­era and tri­pod.

And the re­sult is an as­ton­ish­ing col­lec­tion of evoca­tive pho­to­graphs from In­dia, Sri Lanka and Zim­babwe, among oth­ers.

Comp­ton, who an­nounced his re­tire­ment from pro­fes­sional cricket last month, said photography helped him re­lax.

He said: “Photography has al­ways of­fered me an es­cape away from the in­ten­sity of pro­fes­sional sport and so most of my crick­et­ing life has been spent ex­plor­ing coun­tries through the lens of my cam­era.

“This col­lec­tion chron­i­cles the trav­els I’ve em­barked on for the last decade, the places I dis­cov­ered off the pitch and the char­ac­ters I en­coun­tered along the way. The re­sult is one I’m in­cred­i­bly proud of.”

The 35-year-old, who was born in Durban, in South Africa, spent the most pro­duc­tive sea­sons of his ca­reer at Taun­ton, be­tween 20102014, in a for­mi­da­ble bat­ting line up along­side the likes of Mar­cus Trescoth­ick, James Hil­dreth, Craig Kieswet­ter, Jos But­tler and Peter Trego.

His form earned him his Eng­land call-up and he ended up play­ing 16 Tests, with the clear high­light be­ing back-to-back hun­dreds in New Zealand.

He left Som­er­set in Novem­ber 2014 and re­turned to Mid­dle­sex, his first county and the one where his grand­fa­ther cheered post-war Bri­tain wish his dash­ing bat­ting.

The ex­hi­bi­tion – Be­yond the Bound­ary – forms part of Comp­ton’s ben­e­fit sea­son at Mid­dle­sex and is staged at the Mad­dox Gallery in Mayfair.

Pre­sented over two floors the ex­hi­bi­tion will show­case these un­seen works by Comp­ton taken dur­ing a ten-year pe­riod and in­spired by the de­sire to cap­ture the rich­ness and hon­esty of life.

Mad­dox Gallery’s cre­ative di­rec­tor Jay Rut­land said: “We are de­lighted to be host­ing Nick’s first ever solo show of pho­to­graphic works. Mad­dox Gallery has al­ways prided it­self on our abil­ity to recog­nise and sup­port emerg­ing artis­tic tal­ent and we feel in­cred­i­bly priv­i­leged to be sup­port­ing Nick’s tran­si­tion from a sports­man to a pho­to­graphic artist.

“For us, the field of photography is an ex­cit­ing medium to ex­plore and in­vest in. Nick is cer­tainly one to watch.”

Be­yond the Bound­ary is part of a series of ben­e­fit events and sup­ports men­tal health char­ity, MIND. In ad­di­tion, Nick will do­nate a per­cent­age of the pro­ceeds to Pe­tra’s Place,

For us, the field of photography is an ex­cit­ing medium to ex­plore and in­vest in. Nick is cer­tainly

one to watch MAD­DOX GALLERY’S JAY

RUT­LAND

the chil­dren’s char­ity es­tab­lished by the Pe­tra Ec­cle­stone Foun­da­tion.

Comp­ton has made me­dia ap­pear­ances this sum­mer for Sky and ESPNcricinfo as he looks to tran­si­tion away from pro­fes­sional sport.

When an­nounc­ing his re­tire­ment at the start of Oc­to­ber, he said: “I look forward to pur­su­ing my other in­ter­ests, par­tic­u­larly in the me­dia and photography as well as work­ing on a few busi­ness ven­tures.”

He also talked of his pride of his crick­et­ing ca­reer.

“I am par­tic­u­larly proud of my suc­cess­ful open­ing part­ner­ship with Alas­tair Cook and our series vic­tory in In­dia, the first time in 28 years an Eng­land team has won in In­dia.

“There have been some chal­lenges that I have had to con­front, but in spite of these I feel in­cred­i­bly for­tu­nate to have had this ca­reer of mine. For one, be­ing named one of Wis­den’s five Crick­eters of the Year in the 150th An­niver­sary Edi­tion along­side both my crick­et­ing hero Jac­ques Kal­lis, and my school friend Hashim Amla.

“On the do­mes­tic front, what a team I played in at Som­er­set. And win­ning the County Championship at Lord’s on the fi­nal day of the 2016 sea­son for Mid­dle­sex pro­vided all in­volved with an ex­pe­ri­ence that we will savour for the rest of our lives.”

Be­yond the Bound­ary runs from Novem­ber 7-14 at the Mad­dox Gallery, Mayfair, 9 Mad­dox Street London W1S 2QE. Mon­day–Satur­day 10am–6pm, Sun­day 11am–5pm

Pic­ture: Nick Comp­ton / Mad­dox Gallery

Soft ball

Pic­ture: Nick Comp­ton / Mad­dox Gallery

Zim Story

Pic­ture: Nick Comp­ton / Mad­dox Gallery

Boy on train

Pic­ture: Ju­lian Finney/Getty Im­ages

Nick Comp­ton bat­ting forEng­land against South Africa in Durban on Box­ingDay 2015

Pic­ture: Nick Comp­ton / Mad­dox Gallery

Sachin

Pic­ture: Nick Comp­ton / Mad­dox Gallery

Beach cricket

Pic­ture: Nick Comp­ton / Mad­dox Gallery

Self por­trait

Pic­ture: Nick Comp­ton / Mad­dox Gallery

Nepalese smile

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