A recording of a pre-Bond Sean Connery in his first ever TV lead role has been unearthed by the play's director after it was thought to have been lost. 

Connery played jaded boxer Malcolm "Mountain" McClintock in the 1957 play Requiem for a Heavyweight, which also starred future Till Death Do Us part actor Warren Mitchell and another young newcomer by the name of Michael Caine.

BBC News reports that the play was broadcast live on BBC television and no sound recordings were thought to have been made until director Alvin Rakoff remembered that he had recorded it for posterity and stored it in his attic where it remained for 55 years.

"I had suddenly thought: 'Maybe this is an important piece,'" said 87-year-old Rakoff. "And I spoke to the man in the sound booth and asked him to do a reel-to-reel so he had an audio recording, and he did."

The crackly recording of Requiem for a Heavyweight features Connery's unmistakably Scottish burr despite the character being written as an American.