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Book of the Year shortlist announced

Posted: 13 March 2023

The shortlist for the Cricket Society and MCC Book of the Year Award 2023 has been announced today.

The competition, run by the Cricket Society since 1970 and in partnership with MCC since 2009, is for books nominated by MCC and Cricket Society Members, and is highly regarded by writers and publishers.

Books by Wasim Akram, Moeen Ali and Geoffrey Boycott are among those chosen on the 2023 shortlist. All six books and authors will be celebrated, and the winner announced, at an awards evening at Lord’s on Tuesday 11 April.

"some very good books narrowly missed out"

Chair of judges Robert Winder said: “There was a good deal of heart searching over the choice this year, and some very good books narrowly missed out. That is always sad.

"But the judges were happy to have been able to select a list of great range and energy, from national history and autobiography to close analysis and children’s story.”

The 2022 winner was David Woodhouse’s Who Only Cricket Know, Hutton’s Men in the West Indies 1953/54.

The six books on the 2023 shortlist are:

Sultan, A Memoir, Wasim Akram with Gideon Haigh, Hardie Grant

The Legend of Sparkhill, Moeen Ali and Tanya Aldred, Fairfield Books

Being Geoffrey Boycott, A First and Second Hand Account of 108 Caps, Geoffrey Boycott and Jon Hotten, Fairfield Books

An Island’s Eleven, The Story of Sri Lankan Cricket, Nicholas Brookes, The History Press

First of the Summer Wine: George Hirst, Schofield Haigh, Wilfred Rhodes and the Gentle Heart of Yorkshire Cricket, Harry Pearson, Simon & Schuster

Crickonomics: The Anatomy of Modern Cricket, Stefan Szymanski and Tim Wigmore, Bloomsbury Sport

The 12 other books long listed were: 

Answering the Call, The extraordinary life of Sir Wesley Hall, Paul Akeroyd, J.W. McKenzie

Fair Game, Alex Blackwell with Megan Maurice, Hachette Australia

Beyond the Pavilion, Reflections on a Life in Cricket, Barry Knight with Andrew Leeming, Quiller Publishing

Lords of Mischief: Dan Leno and Clown Cricket, Eric Midwinter, Max Books

Swallows and Hawke, English Cricket Tours, the MCC and the Making of South Africa, 1888-1968, Richard Parry and Andre Odendaal, Pitch Publishing

Fifteen Minutes of Fame, Australia’s 70 One-Test Wonders, Ken Piesse,

Laker and Lock, The Odd Couple, Christopher Sandford, Pitch Publishing

Between Overs: How Life gets in the Way of Cricket, Michele Savidge, Pitch Publishing

Elephant in the Stadium, Arunabha Sengupta, Pitch Publishing

Making Decisions: Putting the human back in the machine, Ed Smith, William Collins

Different Class, The Untold Story of English Cricket, Duncan Stone, Repeater Books

CLR James, A Life Beyond the Boundaries, John L Williams, Constable, HB

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