News | West Australian Suburban Turf Cricket Assoc.


Vale Geoff Farrall
Date of Event : Mon Feb 19, 2018 12:55PM

It is with great sadness that the Bentley Cricket Club says goodbye to a founding father and club legend, Geoff Farrall, player #19 and Life Member #1.

Geoff’s legacy at Bentley and within the WASTCA puts him in rare company in the echelons of WA cricket. His career is rich with Bentley’s history some of which is described below:

His first match for Bentley was in 1954 just our second season, at a time when the Association was known as the WA Senior Matting Association, and the club named Bentley Park. There were three grades in the Association of six teams each using four grounds. 
His second season saw him elected club secretary in 1955 at a time when club membership was 21/6 ($2.15) and ball fees 6/- (60c). His emergence in 1955/56 as a quality player was evident with his 266 runs @ 14 and 34 wickets @10.

In 1956 he was elected secretary, treasurer and club captain and continued to grow his reputation with the bat and ball, bringing up 100 wickets in the 1957/58 season and 1000 runs in 1959/60.

Milestones continued to fall for Farrall, taking his 200th wicket in 1960/61, his 42 wickets @ 8.1 saw with win the A grade Association bowling award, the following season he was in just as fine a form, taking 41 @ 8.7

March 1962 saw the construction of the Merv McIntosh Pavilion (which the club still calls home) and the laying of a ‘malthoid’ wicket at Wyong Reserve in Bentley, Bentley Park CC had a home ground, 1962/63 Farrall brought up his 300th wicket as he returned 49 @ 10.3. These first 10 seasons had seen a golden era for Bentley, the Club's top side had won a "B" Grade Premiership, three "A" Grade Minor Premierships and played in an "A" Grade Grand Final.

In 1964/65 Bentley Park CC became Bentley CC and the Association, the WASTCA, as Geoff was made Life Member #1 courtesy of his 100 games the season previous and the club adopted its first Constitution.

1965/66 and Geoff continued into unchartered territory, reaching 2000 runs and 400 wickets. Throughout this time, Geoff had also been a key administrator for the club. In 1967/68 he had served 10 years on the club executive and joined the WASTCA where he served the next eight seasons as vice-president. Although Geoff’s returns with the ball had fallen from the heady days of the 50s, he was still returning 30 odd wickets a season in the club’s top side.

He continued to play and administer in the competition, being made a WASTCA life member in 1968 and returning his best season to date, 50 wickets @ 9.7. By 1969/70, Geoff’s son Peter was leading the attack in the top side and Geoff decided to captain the 2nd XI. Perhaps a premature retirement from the top XI after 162 games, saw him make 263 @ 14.9 and take an astonishing 70 @ 7.5 in the 2nd XI.

1972/73 saw Geoff elected club president for the first of three consecutive years in the role and the first Bentley player to reach 200 matches. In 1973/74, Geoff returned to the 1st XI to see Bentley win their second premiership, his season haul of 65 @ 9.3 a significant factor in the flag winning effort.

By 1975, Farrall was ready to retire as increasing player numbers were seeing younger men miss out on spots in the two teams. Retirement was short lived though, as Bentley added a third side in 1976/77 where Geoff proved he still had even past his half-century, taking 86 @ 7.2 in 7th Grade including a grand final and his 800th wicket.

After another dominant season in the third side, Geoff returned to the second side in 1978/79, continuing his hauls and bringing up his 4000th run a season later. By 1980/81, he had 1000 wickets for Bentley as he was back in the 3rd XI, and in 1982/83 in the third side Geoff played his 300th for Bentley.

1984/85 and Geoff was playing on past the retirement of one of his sons, where he was again the best bowler in the 3rd XI, returning 32 @ 11.8. 1987/88 and Geoff was still a force in 7th Grade, 24 @ 15.5, saw him past 1200 wickets. By 1992/93, Geoff continued to play on past the retirement of his sons and reached the 400 game milestone.

By 1993/94, Bentley was well and truly in the ‘modern age’ with four sides now representing and this saw the permanent retirement of Geoffrey Farrall. Farrall played a total of 408 games, scoring 4727 runs and taking 145 catches. But his biggest statistical record (and almost unsurmountable) is his efforts with the ball, with 1286 wickets to his name at an average of just 11.8, taking 10 wickets in a match on 10 separate occasions and an outstanding 67 five-wicket hauls in an innings. He bowled 34,219 deliveries (equivalent to 5,703.1 six-ball overs).

Post-retirement, he continued to support his beloved Blues and was a regular spectator at matches into the 2000s. Geoff was a walk-up starter when the Bentley Team of the First 50 years was selected in 2003, his wife Norma awarded life membership in 2006, with sons Peter, Michael and Stephen all enjoying careers of their own with Bentley, playing alongside their father on many a matchday. In 2016, he was inaugurated into the BCC Life Members Hall of Fame and the Wall of Honour in the Canning Sports Club is named after him.

To this day, Geoff holds a plethora of cricket records which will never be surpassed, his 21 years on the club executive proof he was a legendary clubman both on and off the field. No other Bentley player holds claim over a career as extraordinary or influential as Geoffrey Farrall, and precious few others in the State of WA could also be held to such a level.

His records are unassailable, his legacy is pantheodic.

RIP Foxy

Last updated: Monday February 19, 2018 4:03PM
Author: Steven Glover