We have received news of the passing of John Darling who died on Sunday 11th August which was his 67th birthday. He was a remarkable, well-educated, well-spoken and well-travelled man who was a founder member of Lanna Cricket Club as is shown by his presence in this team photo from 2012 soon after the club's formation. He made occasional but always memorable appearances at Gymkhana Club, at the UN Irish Pub and at the Holiday Inn as he jetted in to Chiang Mai from Melbourne, Hong Kong or Singapore.
John was from a very famous Australian cricketing family and he always helpfully reminded us of the details with Joe Darling captain of Australia from 1898 to 1905 and his cousin Rick Darling who was first selected for Australia during the Packer Years and played in the 1979 World Cup. John and his father were also founder members of the Lord's Taverners (Australia) and John passed on his family's respects on hearing of the death of fellow elder-statesman Graeme Moynihan.
John remained in regular contact by email as he was pleased to receive any mailings we sent out to Lanna members. John had suffered a stroke a few years back but he showed great determination in walking across to the cricket bar at Gymkhana or up the stairs at UN Irish and resuming his successful business career.
We last saw John at UN Irish at the start of last season when Richard Young held a function to celebrate his marriage and John announced his generous plan to support CMSCA junior cricketers both on the field and in being able to pursue their educations. Martin Papworth has reported that the first scholarships have now been awarded and the junior recipients will all be part of the Lanna tour to the Koh Chang Beach Cricket Tournament next week.
Looking into the archive, one of the matches that John Darling played for Lanna in December 2012 was against Thailand Women who were then coached by Lanna stalwart Eddie Joyner and have recently won a world record 17 consecutive T20 Internationals. John would have been a proud man indeed if Thailand manage to qualify for the next ICC Women's T20 World Cup which will be held in Australia next year and we should all hope that his sponsorship of junior cricketers may live on in his memory.
Condolences to all of John's friends and family. His email responding to a remainder about the last Lanna CC AGM held in February simply said ' Enjoy please all. Always have you in my thoughts
and happy to be an Hon International Ambassador. Best Prof JD.'