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on 7 October 2015
Jupp, now a very established actor and comedian, writes of his attempt to fulfil a boyhood ambition of writing about Test cricket, joining the England tour of India and trying (and failing) to make a living out of a sport he loves so dearly. Tunku Varadarajan, this is a must-read for you!
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on 23 July 2012
Miles Jupp is becoming an increasingly visible presence on British TV these days. He shows up on `Have I Got News For You' and `Would I Lie To You' - and I thought he was very authoritative on the entertaining documentary Andy Hamilton made about Satan. However when I first saw him, he wasn't a mid-ranked comedian at all - he was Archie the inventor on bizarre Scottish kids' programme `Balamory'. (I have young nieces, and so a certain level of exposure to these things). And it's in the period between him being on kids TV and him starting to make an impression as comedian that this memoir begins.

One day Miles, a great cricket fan, decided that the best career to have if you want to watch lots of cricket is a cricket journalist. (You can't fault the logic.) Armed with a story British film critic Barry Norman apparently used to tell that, when things weren't going well for him, he used to hang out in bars in Fleet Street pretending to be hard at work until people started beginning conversations with "Barry, I know you're busy, but could you possibly do something for us...." Miles blagged himself credentials from BBC Scotland and (Wales's) The Western Mail, to go cover the English cricket team's tour to India.

What follows is a genial and humorous guide to how he tried to fit in with the other 'journalists' when basically having the heart of a fan. The book is an almost laugh out loud funny travelogue, with anecdotes of misunderstanding placed on top of misunderstanding. Sometimes it's clear that it was based on a stand-up comedy show, but that's maybe why the more reflective parts work so well - they give the book an extra level of depth.

It doesn't hold its momentum throughout (as when Miles starts to get disillusioned with what he's doing and even with cricket itself, the tone does sink a little), but for the most part this is a highly amusing read, and one can't help admire the author for having the gumption to have gone through with such an elaborate - and simultaneously seat of the pants - facade.

Of course though, if you are going to read it, it does help to like cricket.
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I bought this in the airport looking for a light read to take on holiday with me. I enjoy Miles' stand up suff and and I'm a fan of cricket. It looked like it would fit the bill,and it did. This is a real delight. Miles' description of how he came to love cricket, how he came on this mad idea and finally actually live the dream are very funny indeed. Of course, without giving too much away, 'the dream' does not quite live up to his expectations. His descriptions of dealing with Indian beaurocracy, and the effects of the Indian diet on his bowels are particulary funny as is his self deprecating humour. If you're looking for a light, entertaining and funny read this summer you won't find much better than this. Oh, and you don't need to be a cricket lover to appreciate it.
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on 26 May 2015
Miles comes across as a bit of an ass frankly. It all sounds rip roaringly good fun and in the early stages of this book you are cheering Jupp on as his fumbles his way between test venues but ultimately I tired of the fact he repeatedly could not remember the name of his own hotel or indeed which direction the cricket ground is located, both of which scenarios served to stifle Mile's attempts to cover cricket for the Western Gazette. I read it on holiday and i left it in the hotel..... I cannot remember the name of the establishment though.
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on 7 June 2015
A very funny account of a rather brave plan to become a cricket journalist by simply blagging his way into the press box during the England 2006 tour of India. It's both observational comedy and travelogue and anyone who has ever watched cricket, enjoyed travelling and has to occasionally wing it themselves will enjoy the adventures.
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on 18 June 2015
This is a great read for all ordinary cricket fans. A fascinating insight into the behind the scenes life of a cricket journalist. It's a "Boys Own" tale and an adventure we all think we would love to take. Although, reading some of more graphic parts of the book, I'll be happy to keep on watching cricket from the comfort of my sofa.
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on 24 May 2012
A ripping yarn from Miles Jupp - a must read for English cricket fans, and an even bigger must read for TMS aficionados (plenty of behind-the-scenes anecdotes concerning Aggers, Peter Baxter, Simon Mann et al). A good, light, summer read.
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on 6 January 2013
I came across this book firstly in paperback and dipped in at various points. Enjoyed it so much that I decided to take the plunge on my Kindle. It turned out to be well worth it! What a mixture of events in a thoroughly warm hearted story. I love cricket but am not good at playing it so could identify with the 'second-hand' way of experiencing the game in the way that Miles Jupp attempted. The story (undoubtably true with slight poetic variations?) was not just all about cricket but also gave a flavour of the background life to this 'adventure'. Thank you Miles, loved every minute of it!
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on 22 January 2013
As an expectation, what could be better - a comedian writing about cricket? Should be funny, with lots of inside information about what happens on an England cricket tour. To some extent the latter is fulfilled, but not to a satisfying extent. And there are no hilariously funny parts; it is funny only if you enjoy spending the entire book cringing for the writer in his embarrassing situation of trying to make his way in a setting in which he doesn't belong. You feel for him as he tries to gain acceptance from a posse of journalists, but all the while you wait for the breakthrough moment, and it never comes. Some people come out of it well - the generosity of Botham in rescuing him in a very embarrassing situation, the charm of David Gower, both proving that it is possible to be great at sport and also genuinely decent people. Ultimately, however, the book is an expectation that is never quite fulfilled.
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on 13 November 2014
As a huge cricket fan, I was intrigued by the thought of a mere cricket fan mixing it with the journalist and broadcasters during a test series to see if it could actually be done. Miles Jupp did what many of us wouldn't dare and shows us how where the true fan belongs. A top read!!
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