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Birthday boy Martyn was a goalscoring King
One of Colchester United ’s greatest-ever goalscorers celebrates his 75th birthday today.
Martyn King, who hit 130 league goals for the U’s in the late 1950s and 1960s, is regarded as one of the club’s finest forwards of all time.
King’s goalscoring record has stood for nearly half a century and is now unlikely to be beaten.
During his time at the U’s, he hit the net with regularity and notched six hat-tricks in U’s colours.
King was part of Colchester’s outstanding 1961-62 promotion-winning team, which was also the highest-scoring team in the U’s history.
Colchester hit the net 104 times in 44 league games and King struck up a prolific understanding with strike partner, Bobby Hunt.
The pair scored nearly 200 goals between them in under four seasons, before Hunt moved on to Northampton, in 1964.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of that great U’s team and Hunt believes King is one of the club’s finest-ever players.
Hunt said: “Martyn was different class - goalscoring was second nature to him and he was a one-off.
“He’s not a tall man and not of big build but he had pretty much everything.
“He was good in the air and his ability on the ground was superb.
“His finishing was second to none and he read the game very well.
“To play with Martyn, Peter Wright and Michael Grice was an absolute pleasure.
“Peter and Michael were on the wings and they helped to create so many chances for us.
“They must have laid on around half of the goals that Martyn and I scored, that season.
“As far as my success rate goes, it was the best period in my career.”
Hunt and King struck up a formidable partnership on the pitch, half a century ago.
Incredibly though, they often only ever saw one another on matchday, with Hunt being one of the U’s part-time players.
“We used to go straight home and as players, we didn’t really socialise much in those days,” said Hunt, who holds the U’s record for most league goals in a season after hitting the net 38 times during the 1961-62 campaign.
“I was part-time and most of the other players, including Martyn, were full-time.
“We only really saw each other Saturday to Saturday.”
See Thursday's Gazette for this story and all of the latest Colchester United news.