Golden Square sporting community loses icon in John "JB" Bennetts

GOLDEN SQUARE LEGEND: John "JB" Bennetts, who died last Sunday, was an iconic figure at the sporting clubs of Golden Square.

GOLDEN SQUARE LEGEND: John "JB" Bennetts, who died last Sunday, was an iconic figure at the sporting clubs of Golden Square.

THE Golden Square sporting community has lost one of its iconic figures following the death of John Bennetts earlier this week.

Better known as “JB”, Bennetts was a life member of both the Golden Square cricket and football-netball clubs.

Bennetts was also a long-time member of the Golden Square Working Men’s Club Billiard and Snooker Club as both a player and official for more than 50 years.

On the cricket field Bennetts first played with Golden Square in 1954-55 in what was the first season of the Bendigo District Cricket Association’s C Grade junior competition.

He holds Golden Square’s record for B grade games with 111, taking 536 wickets with his dangerous spin bowling, while his 22 A grade games included being a member of the club’s 1960-61 premiership team.

Bennetts was also a long-time curator of the club, chairman of selectors when Robert Bakes was coach, committee member and delegate to the BDCA, where he is also a life member.

“Farewell to this legendary man who did so much for Golden Square and was so supportive of me as a young cricketer,” Rich Scarff wrote in tribute.

“One of the best pitch curators ever and I can still hear you calming us down when the sledging got a little out of hand… ‘wickets not words’.”

With the Golden Square Football-Netball Club, Bennetts also volunteered his services on the committee as the minutes secretary and was a team manager of the reserves.

Bennetts, who was also a life member of the BFNL, will be farewelled at a service next Thursday.

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