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Boris Becker - The Player: The Autobiography Hardcover – 1 Jun 2004

3.5 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam Press; First Edition edition (1 Jun. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0593053443
  • ISBN-13: 978-0593053447
  • Product Dimensions: 16 x 2.6 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 514,170 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"'Fascinating reading, mainly because he is that rare thing: a sportsman who opens up, who can articulate his emotions fluently, convey the pain of defeat and the elation of victory with eloquence, humour and resonance'" (GQ)

"'His account of the pressures he endured as a boy-wonder, when Volkswagon was the only German name better-known than his own, is truthful and disturbing'" (Sunday Telegraph)

"'Never far from controversy, Boris Becker reveals all in the most eagerly-awaited tennis autobiography for many a year'" (British Tennis)

"'An extraordinary sports biography'" (Yorkshire Evening Post) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

The no-holds-barred autobiography of a sporting genius. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I have to say being a newcomer to reading autobiographies, i didn't have high expectations of 'The Player' Not because i dislike Boris Becker as either a Tennis player or an Author, I just didn't know what to expect.
Honestly i have to say it's one of the most interesting books i've read. To put everything on show, your relationships, your private life and children, your career and everything that matters the most to you is hard to do because regardless of who you are there are going to be things in life that you've done, that you regret or wish hadn't happened the way it did.
People have previously said that the book isn't the easiest to read, that the chapters are broken up and in no particular order. But i think that even though there is a chronological order to things in life, when you're reliving them as you write it doesnt come out like that and i think that this shows when reading.
Admittedly even i have a complaint about the translation..its a little etchy in places but generally it's consistant and of a good quality.
This book has given me a lot more respect for Boris as a person. He's honest and isn't afraid to talk about any of his experiences. I definetly recommend this to people interested in either him or just a good read!
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By A Customer on 8 Jun. 2004
Format: Hardcover
Becker's life should make a fascinating read. His dramatic entrance onto the world tennis stage heralded the rise of the modern power tennis game and the demise of the old gaurd. His long and successful tennis career spanned some of the tennis greats and encompassed some truely memorable moments. Combined with a turbulent personal life (divorce, illegitimate child, criminal charges), there was plenty of material to produce a "thought-provoking" book. I wanted to know how a strong-willed, provincial boy coped with fame, fortune and adversity and how he developed as a man. I was disappointed.
In contrast to John McEnroe's book, there is little sense of the pressures, intensity and loneliness of being at the sport's summit. The writing lacks depth and too much emphasis is placed on media comment rather than on Becker's own thoughts. The coverage of his tennis career is uneven (Stefan Edberg scarcely gets a mention) and there are no illustrative photographs. I did not get a good sense of how events changed and shaped him or how he matured and developed as a player and as a person.
The book is padded out by some dull, uninspiring and predictable anecdotes (courage of Mandela, charisma of Ali etc) and inexplicable digressions into third-rate travel writing (Paris taxi drivers, New York rudeness etc). At times, Becker descends into an ungracious rant against past injustices which becomes tedious.
Ultimately, the book is not thought-provoking and does not provide insights into a rarified world. Either Becker chose not to include it or he lacks the self-awareness or intelligence to learn from experience.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Being a huge tennis fan, I have started to read my way through the greats of our game.

Having read Andre Agassi "Open" I compare all the others, not only in writing style but also in the substance of the book too to this!

Boris's book is slow and somewhat disjointed, I must have lost myself a hundred times when returning to the book once putting it down.

As for the fellow reviews on Amazon about Mr Beckers exploits off the court I must agree, the book does end on a little bit of a silly note (I wont spoil it here) but it left me thinking (Idiot)!

Worth a read if you are a fan as I say but do your self a favour read Andre Agassi (1st) then Pete Sampras (2nd) then this and the others as this really is a let down in a lot or respects!
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Format: Hardcover
As a self-confessed tennis aficionado who was hooked by the runaway success of Boris Becker in the eighties, my purchase of 'The Player' was a foregone conclusion. After noting the support of two co-authors on the inside cover (Robert Lübenoff and Helmut Sorge) and the use of two translators I felt in safe hands for a rattling good read.
And rattle it did - the diction, that is. I tried to ignore the clumsy style for the first few pages, focussing instead on the person behind the prose. To no avail. The writing jars, and in so doing distracts from the at times compelling subject matter. I soon concluded that the finger of blame largely points at an exceedingly poor translation effort that borders on abominable. Many German phrases have simply been shoehorned into English, word by word, with no attempt to come up with a more apt equivalent. Grinding sentence construction ('In an atmosphere like that of a bullring, with the spectators cheering me on, I won in four sets...) ensures a bumpy ride to the baseline for all but the most battle-hardened readers.
The story line (if there is such a thing in an autobiography) is anything but linear. While the (abstract) chapter headings conjure up a location or topic, Boris often breaks the flow by skipping ahead to or revisiting other events that may not necessarily bear any relation to the subject in hand. His erratic style can be taxing on the reader's patience, to say the least.
And yet... this reader finished the book. Something amongst the minefield of pedestrian prose and inherent inconsistencies kept me turning pages! Halfway through, and it dawned on me: the book's poor editing and haphazard translation unintentionally enhances its author's beguilingly honest approach to laying bare his life to date.
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