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Arm-ball to Zooter: A Sideways Look at the Language of Cricket [Hardcover]

Lawrence Booth
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

5 Oct 2006
What's the difference between short leg and deep midwicket? When would you be thinking about bowling a yorker? What's so great about the sound of leather on willow? Cricket's vocabulary is a mixture of jargon and cliche, poetry and prose, misty-eyed romanticism and old-gits' cynicism. "Arm-ball to Zooter" is a witty guide to the peculiarities of the game, its history and major figures; cricket-lovers might find their own pet hates confirmed; cricket newcomers might be amazed at what cricket-lovers have been up to all these years.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd (5 Oct 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 014051581X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140515817
  • Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 13.8 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,043,719 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


A witty and readable guide to the words that matter...
indispensable for newcomers and veterans alike. -- SPORT magazine

Chatty, amusing (plus Nick Newman's delightful cartoon A to Z)...
A cricketer's dip-in book for the Christmas stocking. -- WISDEN CRICKETER magazine

Cricket's ability to fit the new alongside the old grins happily
out of Lawrence Booth's entertaining writing. -- SUNDAY TIMES -- BOOK OF THE WEEK

I looked up a word and was sucked in. Two hours -- and several
belly laughs -- later I resurfaced.

From the Inside Flap

Few sports, with the possible exception of tae kwon do, have a
vocabulary as rich and apparently grounded in freemasonry as cricket. If
batsmen are not being bamboozled by doosras, they are pulling through
midwicket or reverse-sweeping to third man. Bowlers seem to be forever
peppering their maidens with googlies, or fiddling mischievously with the
seam. Grown men just can't stop shouting funny things at other, slightly
older, grown men. Everyone, everywhere, it seems, is doing something that
is incapable of being expressed in plain English. So what, exactly, IS

Lawrence Booth, author of the Guardian's acclaimed `The Spin', makes the
perfect guide to this often inhospitable terrain. Exploding pomposity,
misty-eyed clichés and old gits' cynicism aplenty along the way, he
explains the history and institutions of the game through its language, and
nothing - from WG Grace and the smack of leather on willow to the (brief)
advent of aluminium bats and Kerry Packer - will ever seem quite the same

What has Albania got to do with anything? Who was George Davis? And what on
earth is a freaker? From bats and balls to the names of the big, the
smaller and the frankly obscure, via the quirks, oddities and irrelevancies
that make up the game - ARM-BALL TO ZOOTER is the definitive look - the
perfect all-rounder - at the weird and wonderful world of a language we
could all do with speaking just a little more fluently.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb! 18 Oct 2006
By Spike
Brilliant. I love Booth's stuff in the Guardian and this is even better. He manages to inform and entertain at the same time, which is a rare skill. Each entry contains a - usually very good - gag and the cross-referencing is addictive. His enthusiasm for the game always shines through.
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding 2 Oct 2006
Lawrence Booth is one of the brightest young cricket writers in England and this is a splendid book: witty, informative, often laugh-out-loud funny and oozing class.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars hits the spot 19 Oct 2006
Not a huge cricket fan but was given this for christmas by someone who thinks I should be, and have really enjoyed dipping in and out of it ever since. Funny, informative, sharp and easy to digest. For me, the perfect toilet book - and that's no insult!!!
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