SIDE BY SIDE: Bill Wynn and Bruce Baxter playing for Souths.
SIDE BY SIDE: Bill Wynn and Bruce Baxter playing for Souths. Contributed

Sporting community to farewell Bill Wynn

EVERY minute Bill Wynn was playing sport he was trying to figure a way for his team to win.

It didn't matter if his team was miles in front or staring defeat in the face, Wynn would be scheming ways to get across the finishing line ahead of the rest, said close friends.

His competitive nature could rub opponents the wrong way, but Bill never thought that a problem.

But it did guarantee him respect. The opposition always knew "Wynnie" was up for the contest and would never back down.

It was a trait that rubbed off on teammates in the many cricket, soccer and lawn bowls team he played in. His teams never showed complacency when on top, or gave in if they found themselves behind.

Wynn showed the same uncompromising attitude as he battled the disease that was eventually to claim him last Wednesday, a few weeks after his 60th birthday.

Today his family, friends and the sporting community will farewell Bill at a funeral service in St Mary's Catholic Church, Grafton.

Prominent cricket umpire Darren Goodger officiated in many of the games Wynn played in after he returned to Grafton in the late 1980s.

"I remember those days well," Goodger said. "Sitting around the table at the South Club, on the punt, having a few beers with Wynnie and talking cricket with the boys. Great days.

Goodger said Wynn was also a tireless worker behind the scenes.

"The Neil Frame Shield (representative over-40s cricket) would not have been the success it was without Billy," he said.

"Whatever sport Bill was involved in he always made just as big a contribution off the field as on it."

Close friend Bruce Baxter, who taught with Wynn at South Grafton High School as well as playing hundreds of cricket matches with him, will deliver the eulogy today.

"It's going to be hard, but I'll find a way to get through it," he said.

He said his friend proved to be a thinker about the game right to the end.

"At the beginning of last season, he said to me he thought the DRS was unfair when teams lost a challenge when replays showed part of the ball was hitting the stumps.

"He thought the not out decision was fair enough, but it was unfair on the team making a challenge to lose it when the ball would clip the stumps.

"Anyway the MCC has announced some ideas they are looking and blow me if that's one of the ideas they're looking at.

"But that's Billy for you, always ahead of the game."

Bill's figures

Bill Wynn's figures in all grades playing for South Services.

Matches: 309 in all grades

Batting: 5565 runs at 18.36 with one century and 24 50s.

Bowling: 2 wickets at 75.5

Fielding: 160 catches. A club record.