THE man who was stabbed early on Sunday morning in Southend town centre is in a stable but critical condition in hospital.

The 24-year-old from Rayleigh was stabbed in the abdomen around 2am near the Slug and Lettuce bar in Southchurch Road.

A police spokesman said today: “We are still trying to understand the motive behind this attack.”

The knife used in the attack has still not been found.

Anyone with information in connection about the stabbing is asked to contact detectives at Southend police station on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.