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Trevor Benson was a Dolphins mainstay for 237 games, a Dolphins junior who was there all through the 1980s and worked hard for a long career that stretched into the '90s.

Benson did any role the Dolphins asked of him, played in three grand finals and won a Rothmans Medal in a great career.

Trevor Benson Q&A

How’d you get to the Dolphins?

I was a Dolphin junior, lived there my whole life and born there, went to Redcliffe High and signed with the Dolphins when I was 16. I was really never going to play for anyone else. It was such a good time in Redcliffe; Vic Tighe’s butcher shop, Obsty would bring around your gas bottle and Arthur ran the pub.

Can you remember your debut?

It was against Valleys and Frank Stanton gave me a run in 1980 at Lang Park. I came up from the under 18 team. Valleys were always hard work and physical. They were the premiers and won their first 15 games and won the minor premiership again in 1980. Wally scored after a few minutes and we came back from 7-0 down to win 23-20. We were fighting to make finals and ended up missing out by three points.

How did you find Frank Stanton in his time at Redcliffe?

He was only here for one year but to have the Australian coach give you your debut for your club side was pretty special.

Who is your favourite Dolphin?

Bunny Pearce was great for me. I came into the side in 1980 and he was just an idol of mine. He was a very good player and just a great man. I wish everyone could spend time with Bunny, it would only improve your life. My other hero was Tony Obst who coached me in under 10 at Redcliffe in 1972, then I played with him in 1980 and 1981. He coached under 10s like he played - it was pretty fiery. Obsty would have been early 20s and it was great he coached a junior side. For a kid to be coached by Obsty on Saturday morning and then you’d watch him play A grade at 3pm is a great memory of my life.


1981, 1983 and 1987 - what would you change about those grand finals?

They were all disappointing for different reasons, 1981 because it was the last couple of seconds. I remember looking around and seeing all the Magpies fans walking out with minutes to go. 1983 we had a good team, we lost to Easts twice in one finals series. The defence was just outstanding. We could only score two tries against them in two games. 1987, Brothers attack was great and they just completely outscored and attacked us. 1981 was still pretty special. I was 18 and played in a grand final and won ANZ Colt of the Year and played with Arthur for Queensland and Redcliffe, but be nice to have that last 20 seconds again.

1990 Rothmans Medal - was that your best year?

It was up there. I didn’t really think too much about winning. I think 1987-1988 may have been better, we made the grand final and I went to the Dragons, but I broke my arm and didn’t play too much in the season, and then came home back to the Dolphins to finish my career.

You played for Queensland in 1981 in the interstate game - the second last interstate game before it ended due to Origin - Beetson, Phelan, Carr, Meninga, Close, Lewis, Scott, Niebling and Backer.

To play for Queensland with Arthur was tremendous. He was back at Redcliffe in 1981 so I had spent the year with him up till then, but I just remember this real excitement when he was coming back. So many great players in that Queensland side. We lost 10-2 and John Ribot scored twice for the Blues. They had Ribot, Boustead and McCabe. But I have played for Queensland at Lang Park. It’s a pretty good feeling.

Did you feel like you might get another go in Origin - you would have been a handy bench player?

I played so many positions for Redcliffe in the centres, six and even on the wing and second row, but I think sometimes that can harm your chances. I liked playing six but the chances of playing six for Queensland weren’t great for me.

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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