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Sports Books

Read more about your favourite sports or sportsmen and women with a unique perspective on their careers from the comfort of your sofa with this range of recommended books. Whether you’re a football fan, rugby reveller or fishing follower, we have a great read for you!

The Test My Autobiography

The Test My Autobiography

Author: Brian O'Driscoll Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/10/2014

Shortlisted for the Rugby Book of the Year Award at the British Sports Book Awards 2015. Winner of the Bord Gáis Energy Sports Book of the Year 2014. This is the long-awaited autobiography of the greatest rugby player of our time: Brian O'Driscoll. Since 1999, when he made his international debut, there has been no greater player in world rugby than Brian O'Driscoll. In 2010 Rugby World magazine named him its world player of the decade - and since then the legend has only grown. Now, at the end of his amazing career - which culminated in fairy-tale fashion with Ireland's victory in the 2014 Six Nations championship - he tells his own story. Honest, gritty and thoughtful, Brian O'Driscoll's Autobiography is not just an essential sports book. It is an essential book about family, friends, hard work, courage and imagination. An amazing career. There will only ever be one BOD . (Dan Carter). He had incredible talent, sure, but with this he had the incredible work ethic and just as importantly, the humility . (Jason Robinson).

ebook of the month
Downstream A History and Celebration of Swimming the River Thames

Downstream A History and Celebration of Swimming the River Thames

Author: Caitlin Davies Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/04/2015

Stretching 215 miles from its source in Gloucestershire, through England's capital and across to the North Sea, the River Thames has always enticed swimmers. From bathing kings to splashing school children, intrepid wild swimmers to international athletes, this famous river has long been a favourite. But it was the Victorian era that saw the birth of organised river racing with the launch of the long distance amateur championship of Great Britain. Soon floating baths were built in London; people swam at official bathing pools and islands at Oxford, Reading and Henley, dived off pontoons at Kingston and played at temporary lidos in Richmond. By the 1930s the Thames had become a top holiday spot for families with beaches at the Tower of London, Greenwich and Grays. Then in 1957 the river was declared biologically dead, organised racing was largely over, and swimming in the Thames was seen as dangerous. Yet today we have returned to the river in numbers not seen for a long time, some drawn by the thrill of wild swimming, others to compete in annual racing events.

The Climb The Autobiography

The Climb The Autobiography

Author: Chris Froome Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/06/2015

The Climb by Chris Froome - the inspirational memoir from the British winner of the 100th edition of the Tour de France. The Climb tells the extraordinary story of Chris Froome's journey from a young boy in Kenya, riding through townships and past wild animals, and with few opportunities for an aspiring cyclist, to his unforgettable yellow jersey victory in the 2013 Tour de France. A journey unlike any other in the history of cycling, Froome has crossed continents, overcome the death of his mother and conquered debilitating illness to follow his dreams and represent Team GB and Team Sky. He has experienced soaring triumphs, humbling defeats, a public rivalry with Bradley Wiggins and, most recently, the pressures of Lance Armstrong's legacy. Extraordinary, revealing and life-affirming, The Climb is a story of determination, hardship and unimaginable success. Chris Froome was born in Nairobi in 1985 to British parents. He was educated and raised in South Africa and now races for Team GB and Team Sky. In 2011 he finished second overall in the Vuelta a Espana. In 2012 he finished runner-up to Bradley Wiggins in the Tour de France and won the Bronze medal in the Time Trial at the Olympic Games. Froome amassed five stage-race victories in 2013, with triumphs at the Tour of Oman, Criterium International, Tour de Romandie and Criterium du Dauphine leading into a dominant win at the 100th Tour de France. He won the prestigious Velo d'Or award for best rider of 2013 and was shortlisted for the 2013 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award. In February 2014 he won the Tour of Oman and is the favourite to take the yellow jersey yet again at the 2014 Tour de France.

ebook of the month
Secret Life of Twickenham The Story of Rugby Union's Iconic Fortress, the Players, Staff and Fans

Secret Life of Twickenham The Story of Rugby Union's Iconic Fortress, the Players, Staff and Fans

Author: Chris Jones Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/09/2014

Twickenham Stadium is rightly venerated as the home of the Rugby Football Union (RFU). While it may bask in this fame, the stadium's beginnings were very humble. The land it was built upon was purchased in 1907 and would subsequently become the home to the Harlequins who would play the first ever match against Richmond. The first England test match didn't take place until 1910 and a home win ensured things got off on the right footing but cows, sheep and horses would be grazing on the pitch just four years later as the stadium became a farm during the First World War. The first Varsity match was played in December 1921, by which time the popularity of Twickenham had soared. Extra accommodation was created in the North Stand, built in 1925 by the legendary football stadium architect, Archibald Leitch. By 1931, the famous 'Twickenham Look' had come about. When the Second World War arrived, the ground became a Civil Defence depot, and the closest it got to being hit by enemy action was in July 1944 when a V1 flying bomb fell in the front garden of a house opposite the West Gate, injuring sixteen people. The car park was dug up and - appropriately given its original use - turned into allotments to generate much needed fresh food for the locals. The stadium today is at the heart of a multi-million pound business that the RFU controls, but how does it generate so much money from this one plot of land? With such a colourful and celebrated history The Secret Life of Twickenham will dig deeper into it's history to reveal the many men and women, cutting across all social backgrounds, jobs, and positions within the RFU who have helped to build this iconic stadium into a globally recognised brand. It will reveal to all fans of rugby union the true history of the most iconic sports stadium in the British Isles with a compendium of facts, dates, figures and revealing anecdotes of England's sporting fortress.

Mr Darley's Arabian High Life, Low Life, Sporting Life: A History of Racing in 25 Horses

Mr Darley's Arabian High Life, Low Life, Sporting Life: A History of Racing in 25 Horses

Author: Chris McGrath Format: Hardback Release Date: 16/06/2016

Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award In 1704 a bankrupt English merchant sent home the colt he had bought from Bedouin tribesmen near the ruins of Palmyra. Thomas Darley hoped this horse might be the ticket to a new life back in Yorkshire. But he turned out to be far more than that: and although Mr Darley's Arabian never ran a race, 95% of all thoroughbreds in the world today are descended from him. In this book, for the first time, award-winning racing writer Christopher McGrath traces this extraordinary bloodline through twenty-five generations to our greatest modern racehorse, Frankel. The story of racing is about man's relationship with horses, and Mr Darley's Arabian also celebrates the men and women who owned, trained and traded the stallions that extended the dynasty. The great Eclipse, for instance, was bred by the Duke who foiled Bonnie Prince Charlie's invasion (with militia gathered from Wakefield races) and went on to lead the Jockey Club. But he only became a success once bought and raced by a card-sharp and brothel-keeper - the racecourse has always brought high and low life together. McGrath expertly guides us through three centuries of scandals, adventures and fortunes won and lost: our sporting life offers a fascinating view into our history.

Fred Trueman The Authorised Biography

Fred Trueman The Authorised Biography

Author: Chris Waters Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/10/2011

Winner of the Best Cricket Book at the British Sports Book Awards 2012. 'Fred Trueman was the first superstar of the game. He was a flamboyant, larger-than-life character' Ian Botham Fred Trueman was so much more than a cricketing legend. 'The greatest living Yorkshireman' according to Prime Minister Harold Wilson, he couldn't help excelling at everything he did, whether it was as a hostile fast bowler for Yorkshire and England, and the first man to take 300 Test wickets in a career, or as a fearlessly outspoken radio summariser for Test Match Special. He was famous for regularly spluttering that 'I don't know what's going off out there', as well as for the level of swearing he managed to incorporate into everyday speech. Beloved of cricket crowds who filled grounds to witness his belligerent way of playing the game, and nothing but trouble to the cricket authorities, 'Fiery Fred' was the epitome of a full-blooded Englishman. But as Chris Waters reveals in this first full biography, behind the charismatic, exuberant mask lay a far less self-assured man - terrified even that his new dog wouldn't like him - and whose version of his bucolic upbringing bore no relation to the gritty and impoverished South Yorkshire mining community where he actually grew up.

ebook of the month

They are role models, heroes, spokespeople for major brands, they get millions in sponsorship, their personal lives are plastered over the gossip columns, they are at the top of their professions and love them or hate them, they’re all over our newspapers, TVs, PCs and radios. This section has everything the armchair enthusiast could wish for. Myth-busting biographies (Beware of the Dog by Brian Moore), detailed histories (A History of Football in 100 Objects by Gavin Mortimer), personal accounts of huge moments (Black White & Gold by Kelly Holmes), and atmospheric tributes to beloved games (A Last English Summer by Duncan Hamilton. This is the inside track on the lives, loves, losses and victories of some of the world’s most physically talented people, and the games they love to play.

Get into your favourite armchair, plump up the cushions, have a nice cup of tea and dive in. Just make sure you don’t pull a muscle!