RAJESH KUMAR - Cricket Statisticians
Tony Greig

Tony Greig
by David Tossell
A reappraisal of English cricket's most controversial captain

Published by:
Pitch Publishing (Brighton) Ltd.
A2, Yeoman Gate
Yeoman Way, Durrington BN13 3QZ
E-mail : info@pitchpublishing.co.uk
Website : www.pitchpublishing.co.uk

Pages : 252

Price :
Sterling Pounds Fourteen and Pence Ninety Nine only

Author David Tossell is a sports journalist with more than thirty years' experience. He is the author of eight previous books. A former executive sports editor of the Today newspaper, he is currently director of European public affairs for the NFL (National Footaball League).

The book has been divided into three parts. Part one covers Tony Greig as an All-Rounder, Part second as England captain and Part three as Rebel, Rebel.

Tony Greig is remembered as the captain who led cricket into its biggest crisis of the last century. An all-rounder who mixed boldness with belligerence, he had become the first South African to lead England, restoring national pride with victory in India after poundings at the hands of Australia and the West Indies.

This biography examines whether history is fair to one of England's most successful all-rounders or if his achievements will be forever overlooked.

A controversial and charismatic figure whose 'make them grovel' comment about the West Indies typified his ability to talk himself into trouble, he lost the captaincy when it transpired that he was recruiting players for Kerry packer's World Series Cricket. More than three decades later, now a leading television commentator, Greig has never been fully absolved.

David Tossell believes the passing of Tony Greig's all-rounder's baton to the phenomenal Ian Botham meant that it was not until the long years of searching for Botham's successor that Greig's contribution was taken less for granted. Then the eventual emergence of Andrew Flintoff as a world-class player and a folk hero for the modern media age left Greig's career somewhat unappreciated once more. Discussion in recent years of the great post-war England all-rounders tends to focus on two figures: Botham and Flintoff, two loveable men of the people.

"There is a strong argument that Greig deserves his place, if not right alongside the peerless Botham, then at least as part of that group and on a comparable level to Flintoff. The bare facts are that Greig's Test batting average of more than 40 was well above the other two men, while his bowling average was on a par with Flintoff."

Alec Bedser, the chairman of selectors, who appointed England captain and then felt betrayed by him, had remarked: "The enigma of Tony Greig's many-sided character will no doubt fascinate future generations as much as it has puzzled his contemporaries."

Tony Greig is more than just a biography of a fierce competitor who never backed down from a challenge; whether it was dealing with epilepsy, facing up to Dennis Lillee or confronting the authorities.

Featuring many new interviews, including with Greig himself, it examines why he remains largely unforgiven, asks whether off-field activities have condemned his career to be forever under-appreciated and offers a compelling portrait of a fascinating cricketing era.

An excellent publication indeed. Cricket enthusiasts can order the book via the order hotline on 01903 828503.