Five Books Shortlisted For World’s Most Valuable Literary Sportswriting Prize


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The world’s most valuable literary sportswriting prize, which includes a cash prize of £30,000 for the winner, will be contested by five authors:

Be Good, Love Brian: Growing Up With Brian Clough by Craig Bromfield

God is dead: The rise and fall of Frank Vandenbroucke, cycling’s great wasted talent by Andy McGrath

Five shortlisted for Sports Book of the Year

My Hidden Race by Anyika Onuora

Expected Goals: The Story of How Data Conquered Football and Changed the Game Forever by Rory Smith

Beryl: In Search of Britain’s Greatest Athlete, Beryl Burton by Jeremy Wilson

Retired track and field Olympian Anyika Onuora would become the sport’s first female ex-star to win the award.

Five books shortlisted for world’s most valuable literary sportswriting award, William Hill Sportsbook of the Year

Two football books are on the shortlist: Be Good, Love Brian: Growing Up with Brian Clough by Craig Bromfield, a remarkable and heartbreaking story about two brothers, whom football manager Brian Clough adopted to escape their abusive father ; and Expected Goals: The Story of how Data Conquered Football and Changed the Game Forever by Rory Smith, a dive into how data has transformed football.

Cycling proved to be a popular topic this year, with two books also making the shortlist: Beryl: In Search of Britain’s Greatest Athlete, Beryl Burton by Jeremy Wilson, a journalist in search of Britain’s greatest athlete; and God is Dead: The Rise and Fall of Frank Vandenbroucke, Cycling’s Great Wasted Talent by Andy McGrath which looks at the rise and tragic fall of the controversial cyclist.

Alyson Rudd, Chair of the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award Jury, said: “After a banner year for the award, we now have five incredible books on the shortlist. To get to this point, in front of 150 other entrants, is truly a top-notch feat for authors and we are now faced with the very difficult task of finding a winner from a group of impressive and extremely well-written books.

“This literary award is steeped in sports history, and I’m delighted to now join my fellow judges as we read, debate and – eventually – agree on a winner for the 2022 William Hill Sports Book of the Year. .”

Now in its 34th year, the award is dedicated to recognizing excellence in sports writing and provides authors and publishers with a platform to showcase and promote their books.

The first William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award was held in 1989, earning it the title of longest running competition in the industry. Since its launch, it has attracted thousands of authors and publishers, including Nick Hornby, Marcus Trescothick and Brian Moore, as well as last year’s winner Michael Holding and three-time winner Duncan Hamilton.

The winner will be declared on 1 December 2022 at an official awards ceremony at BAFTA 195 Piccadilly, London. The prize features a cash prize of £30,000 for the winner, and shortlisted authors will each receive £3,000 and a leather-bound copy of their book.

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