Ritchie Humphreys came to Pools in 2001 after a number of injuries had restricted his opportunities of adding to his promising start at Sheffield Wednesday.Initially used as a striker, Humphreys struggled for goals before being given a deeper role that he filled with much greater success, first in the centre of midfield and later on the left wing. His sudden death penalty miss ended the club`s promotion hopes in the 2001/02 play-off semi-final at Cheltenham. But he bounced back from that disappointment in fine style, his performances in the 2002/03 promotion season winning him the Player of the Year award from the supporters. Two years later, with Pools in the playoffs yet again, Humphreys helped to erase the memory of the Cheltenham tie by scoring the winning penalty to send Pools to the playoff final in Cardiff at the expense of Tranmere Rovers.During the 2005/06 season, Humphreys became the first Pools player ever to make 200 consecutive league appearances for the club. He spent the bulk of that season playing at left-back, a role he fulfilled well enough to win his second Player of the Year award. His long run of league appearances was finally ended at 234 when new manager Danny Wilson left him on the bench at Hereford, and shortly afterwards Humphreys found himself out of the first team picture altogether as Wilson allowed Port Vale to take him on loan. He returned in October 2007 and re-established himself at left back. For the remainder of that promotion season Humphreys was an ever-present, and he scored some crucial goals as Pools stormed up the table to promotion.The 2007/08 season was a difficult one for the team with most of the season being spent in the bottom half of the table, though relegation rarely looked likely and Pools eventually finished 15th. The season ended on a note of triumph for Humphreys. Not only was he named Player of the Year for a third time, but he also topped the polls for Player of the Decade and Player of the Century.The remainder of his Pools career saw Humphreys become a less influential player while remaining a valued squad member. He passed Watty Moore's total of 447 to become the club's record league appearance holder, and had extended his run to well past 500 in all competitions by the time he was released in 2013.