When Peter Owens walks out to bat or bowl in Portugal next week for Wales it will be the 17th overseas country he has played in during a cricket career that has spanned more than 50 years.

Now aged 68, Peter is currently turning out for the Wales Over 70s side. He also occasionally makes up the numbers playing for Brecon 2nds.

Peter, who had a pacemaker fitted three years ago, has played for the Wales Over 50s, O60s and O70s teams and was the mainstay of the Brecon 1sts team for many years after moving to Brecon in 1979.

He admits he is currently under the age threshold for the O70s team but says the rules allow for one ‘ringer’ - a player who is under the minimum age requirement to turn out for the team.

Peter who had a successful 40-year business career working as an insurance agent for NFU Mutual says cricket has allowed him to travel the world, see places he never imagined he would visit and rack up some amazing achievements such as playing at seven or eight Test grounds.

All that time, Peter has been followed on his travels by his “amazingly supportive” wife Jackie.

Peter, who has incredible levels of energy, says he hopes to continue playing cricket for as long as he can. Indeed, after retiring from his job with NFU Mutual in 2009 he is now back with the company working three days a week – although he promises he will definitely finish working in April next year.

During his long and colourful cricket career, he has also been chairman of The Forty Club for 20 years. He describes The Forty Club as being like the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) but much more inclusive.

The Forty Club is reputed to be the largest wandering cricket club in world. It does not have its own ground and so always plays away. In the past those away fixtures have been against teams like Christ College in Brecon.

He describes himself as a batsman/medium pace seam bowler. When he started playing for Brecon he was an opening batsman but over the years he said he slowly slid back down the order to the point where he is now happy to be a tail-end batsman who can turn his arm over when called upon.

“Over the years my bowling has got a little slower,” Peter admits. “But that can have its advantages as the batsmen I come up against now have to work harder to score off my bowling. A clever batsman against a faster bowler would be able to use the pace of the ball to nick and edge boundaries.”

Peter says he has scored seven or eight centuries as a batsmen, with a highest score of 109. His best bowling analysis was 7-93 against Burghill and Tillington.

In his career with Wales, Brecon, Breconshire (alas no longer with us) and The Forty Club, Peter has played cricket in the following countries: Barbados, St Lucia, Lanzarote, South Africa, Namibia, Dubai, Spain, Cyprus, Malta, Italy, Holland, Denmark, Hong Kong, China (Shanghai), Australia and Sri Lanka. Portugal where he will be touring for one week with a Wales veterans side made up of over-60s and 70s players is the 17th. Some of these countries he has been back to and on those visits he has seen firm evidence that cricket continues to be a global, growing sport. Naturally he has also played in the home countries of England, Scotland and Wales.

“In England you can’t play on the Test pitches any more but I have managed to do that in several of the countries I’ve been to. I’ve played at the Kensington Oval in Barbados - what a fabulous experience that was. I’ve bowled to batsmen like the West Indian great Alvin Kallicharran and I even took Gorden Greenidge’s wicket! I went back and played cricket in Italy and found that the second time that I went most of the players were Italians, whereas before they were mainly expats from Asia. Cricket continues to be a growing sport and through my involvement with Wales and The Forty Club I’ve seen first hand how it brings people together and helps create enduring friendships.”

One of Peter’s prized possessions is the cap he received when playing for Wales Over 50s. Now he has a Wales O70s cap to match. He says his children even got the bug. His daughter Samantha, now Griffiths, became the scorer for Breconshire, Herefordshire and Glamorgan county teams. His son Gareth is more of a rugby player having captained Brecon RFC and played for Worcester.

He took Gordon Greenidge’s wicket while guesting for Builth Wells against the Barbados Wanderers touring team in the 1990s.

This season Peter was delighted to fill in during some games during a successful season with Brecon 2nds, who finished up top of their division. Wales 070s also saw success getting through from their group into quarter-finals of a tournament that included teams from all over the UK. Eventually they lost to Surrey who had topped the other group.

Peter says cricket has helped keep him fit in both body and mind and he continues to play despite his biggest health scare three years ago when he had to have a pacemaker fitted.

He said: “I went to see the nurse for some routine checks and she discovered that I had high blood pressure so she sent me to the doctor. I was then packed off to Nevill Hall where they gave me an ECG and two days later I had a pacemaker fitted. If I had not gone for those checks I would not have known there was a problem, so it was fortunate in a way!”

Just months later Peter was back playing cricket overseas in South Africa. He’s now really looking forward to the trip to Portugal as he has been there to play golf and was keen ot go back. The team will be flying to Lisbon on Wednesday, September 26. They will play three matches at different grounds, with every player being promised at least two games. Naturally his wife Jackie will be going too.

Overall he says cricket has given him an opportunity to see the world. “I’ve been to countries I would have never thought of going to if it were not for cricket. I’ve played at seven or eight Test grounds and seen some amazing sights. There’s a great camaraderie between the players and their families when you go on tour and hopefully I’ve got quite a few more touring years left in me yet.”