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Slipless in Settle is Book of the Year

Harry Pearson’s Slipless in Settle - A Slow Turn Around Northern Cricket was awarded the Cricket Society and MCC Book of the Year accolade at Lord’s.

Pearson received the prestigious award, and with it a cheque for £3,000, in a packed Long Room at Lord’s. He fought off competition from four other books included on the shortlist.

Speaking after collecting his prize, a delighted Pearson said he was amazed at winning the award.

He said: "Following Yorkshire since the early seventies hasn't exactly prepared me for success.

"Looking down the list of previous winners - including Gerald Howat, whose biography of Learie Constantine was one of the inspirations for Slipless - leaves me feeling like an imposter."

Glowing praise

Former England and Somerset all-rounder, broadcaster and journalist Vic Marks chaired the five man panel which judged the competition.

He spoke glowingly about Pearson’s book, while offering the author some advice for the future.

"Harry’s book was a narrative about a summer’s northern league cricket which successfully allowed the past to intrude on the present." said Marks.

"It provided sharp, observational humour and created a strong sense of time and place. Harry’s definition of the north raised issues about whether Geoffrey Boycott was in fact a southerner.

"But my only suggestion for the next print, at least for this southerner chair of judges, is that it would be even better with a map at the front!"
‘Seal of approval’

The Cricket Book of the Year award has been run by the Cricket Society since 1970. Its partnership with MCC began in 2009.

All books are nominated by Members of the Cricket Society and MCC and not publishers.

Former Wisden Editor Scyld Berry, upon winning the award in 2007, described it as "cricket’s seal of literary approval."

This year 16 books were nominated and whittled down to a shortlist by the judging panel - featuring Marks, David Kynaston (MCC), Stephen Fay (MCC), John Symons (Cricket Society) and Chris Finch. Nigel Hancock was the competition’s administrator.

Shortlist 2011

    Stephen Chalke: Now I’m 62, The Diary of an Ageing Cricketer
    Duncan Hamilton: A Last English Summer
    Eric Midwinter: The Cricketer’s Progress - Meadowland to Mumbai
    Harry Pearson: Slipless in Seattle - A Slow Turn Around Northern Cricket
    David Tossell: Following On - A Year With English Cricket’s Golden Boys

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