Cricket stalwart, 90, dies

A SECOND World War prisoner of war and former Warwick area resident Ernie Toovey has died in Brisbane at the age of 90.

He spent many of his early years in the Cement Mills area west of Warwick before enlisting for the Second World War at 19.

In a cricket career disrupted by the war - where the young sailor survived three years in a Japanese Prisoner of War camp - Mr Toovey was an athletic left-handed batsman who played 37 matches for his beloved Queensland, scoring 1212 runs.

His first-class playing career spanned 1949 to 1956, but it also set him on a course that saw him stay actively involved with cricket until the final years of his life.

He became a Queensland selector in 1961 and then chairman of the panel in 1965-66, a role he filled with distinction until he stood down in 1989.

Mr Toovey was patron of the Northern Suburbs District Cricket Club (Brisbane), where he played 109 first-grade matches and was an active committee member well into his 80s.

He served on the old Queensland Cricket Association Executive Committee between 1969 and 1990.

Holder of an MBE and OAM for his services to cricket, the RSL and the Australian Prisoners of War association, he became a life member of Queensland Cricket in 1970.

Mr Toovey also represented Queensland and Australia in baseball.

He served on board HMAS Perth, which was sunk in 1942 near Java with the loss of more than half of its crew.

His funeral service will be held on Tuesday at St Brigids Catholic Church at Red Hill.

Topics:  ernie toovey, prisoner of war, queensland cricket




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