BUNGAY Town’s Craig Hunting’s 500th appearance for the club was marked on Saturday with a presentation to him in the clubroom.
His landmark game came at Sheringham in the final game of 2016. The game against Wymondham Town on Saturday was his 501st, meaning he is now in equal fourth place in the Black Dogs’ all-time appearance charts, and it was fitting that Dave Mickleburgh, whose mark he now equals, presented him with a commemorative picture after Saturday’s game - see photo below.
He also received a presentation cake with the logo 500th Appearance on it and other amusing phrases.
Hunting, who is now 34 and made his debut as a 16-year-old in 1998, said he was pleased to reach the landmark and he had enjoyed almost every one of his 500 games. The defender marked is 501st game by helping the side to an important 3-1 victory over Wymondham Town.
Asked how long he planned to continue playing, he was non-committal. But if he plays regularly for another two seasons he will become the club’s top appearance maker of all time, passing the 557 mark currently held by Graeme Jolly – who also holds the club all-time top goalscorer title, with 238.
Hunting’s debut came on May 8th, 1998, in the final game of that season – a substitute appearance in the Wenhaston Charity Cup. His first start came the following season in a Suffolk Senior Cup game at Sudbury Athletic, and he has been a regular in the line-up ever since, apart from a couple of seasons he spent at Hempnall.
For several seasons he was captain, and an article in Saturday’s match-day programme said Hunting “leads by example and rarely puts a foot wrong. He has given exemplary service to the club over a long period, and had been a marvellous example and mentor to younger players.
His is a record deserving of recognition.”
Against Hellesdon on Saturday Hunting will become equal third in the all-time appearance charts, joining Mark Seamons on 502.