A CRICKET club stalwart has been hit for six after realising he has racked up half a century at the same club.

Alan Elsbury, 71, is a member of Halstead Cricket Club and shocked clubmates after announcing the amazing milestone.

The father and grandfather first joined the club he loves 50 years ago and has never stopped being a member during that time – despite two hip replacements and arthritis.

Alan, from Halstead, has played at least one game every season for the past 50 years in a unique half century.

He made his first team debut for the club in 1972 after joining in 1971 and over the years has played many matches, both bowling and batting.

After moving to the area from south Wales, Alan played his first games against the Old Colonians team from Earls Colne Grammar School.

Alan moved to the area to become a PE teacher at the grammar school

He then moved to Halstead in 1975 after joining the Ramsey School where he worked until retiring in 2014.

A keen sportsman, Alan still visits the gym and played numerous sports, including football for Halstead Town, Earls Colne and Hedingham.

Throughout his cricket career with the club, Alan has racked up a total of 7,778 runs across 353 innings.

His top score was 119 runs.

The stalwart was also a dab hand at bowling, with 93 first team wickets.

His bowling average was just 18.19 with a personal best of 8 for 55.

Son David is also a club member and has played a lot of first 11 cricket.

Alan’s son-in-law, Justin Rose, is the captain of the second 11 team while grandson Freddie is a member of club’s junior set-up.

Alan said: “My first game was against the Earls Colne Grammar School in the summer of 1971.

“Fittingly, last week I played my 50th consecutive season game at Earls Colne for the third 11.

“I joined in 1971 and have played every season up to this season.

“I’m a bit of a sports buff. I still go to the gym twice a week to keep myself fit.

“At Halstead I was in charge of the Colts for about ten years. I captained the second team and played for all the teams, first, second, third, and veterans.

“It has been quite a journey. I think as captain, winning the second team Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship and getting into the first team are my biggest achievements.

“It was never a conscious thing reaching 50 consecutive seasons but looking back my wife deserves gratitude for letting me keep playing for that many years.

“Despite two hip replacements and arthritis I will continue playing if and when I’m needed.”