Alan George Ernest Ealham
|Date of Birth||-||Height||-|
|Debut||Kent 1966||Years of Service||1966-1982|
|Bat||Right-hand||Best Bat||153 Kent v Worcestershire at Canterbury, 1979.|
|Bowl||Right-arm off-break||Best Bowl||1-1 Kent v Middlesex at Lord's, 1968.|
Alan Ealham was an aggressive middle-order batsman whose first-class career started only when, as his father insisted, he had completed his apprenticeship as a welder and panel beater. He made his county debut in 1966 aged 22 and for a decade and a half remained as a key part of a successful Kent side. While he was a good batsman – he passed 1000 runs three times – it was his fielding that lingers in the memory. In an era when outstanding fielders were far from common, Ealham had few equals and, unusually, he was at his best in the deep where his athleticism and powerful arm was to the fore. It was because of this that he was a frequent 12th man for England. At a time when one-day cricket was in the ascendancy, his fielding made him a genuine allrounder and he contributed wholeheartedly to Kent’s five one-day titles and two Championships. He led the side between 1978 and 1980, and retained his links with the county after retirement as 2nd XI coach and director of youth coaching.