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Who is "Stinker"...?

John "Stinker" Clarke is a fascinating fellow. From school captain at Tweed River High School in 1966, he continued to further his studies and graduated with a Diploma of Physcal Education from Wollongong Teachers College, followed by a Bachelor of Education Degree in 1974 at the University of Western Australia. Returning to New South Wales, "Stinker" enrolled in Newcastle University where he undertook a Masters Degree in Educational Studies which was awarded in 1985.

 

An outstanding sportsman, "Stinker" played representative rugby league on Lang Park in Brisbane, representative cricket on the Sydney Cricket Ground and faced the might of the New Zealand All Blacks on the rugby pitch in Perth. "Stinker" was awarded a Full Blue for Sport at the University of Western Australia and won the Hampshire Medal for that state's most outstanding rugby player in 1974. Throughout his sporting and academic career "Stinker" has always found time to go fishing. "Never let study interfere with your fishing ... it's a matter of priority!"

 

Fishing was his first sporting love and he remains passionate to this day. To call fishing a sport is a misnomer according to "Stinker". "Fishing is a way of life. It's just something that you do. In sport there is some type of structure, generally an opponent and a result, a score, a winner and a loser. In fishing, to my way of thinking, there are no losers. Everyone wins a prize whether you can catch a fish or not. The prize is the recreational experience which can be even more valuable if you share that time with someone. I'm sure the fishing experience resulted in my father and I being greater mates".

 

As a sports master in NSW High Schools for 30 years before retirement, "Stinker" is certainly well qualified to make a judgment. "I've always seen the funny side of fishing because I have never taken it seriously. To me fishing is fun. It's as simple as that. Catching fish is easy, finding them is the hard part!

There are a lot of places where fish aren't."