644 pages of small (paperback) print. Pretty daunting at first sight but he has avoided a ‘blow by blow’ account and once you get started it’s an excellent read. Like some other reviewers I gradually warmed to RP who, certainly in the UK, has a somewhat ‘pantomime villain’ reputation. His family clearly means a lot to him and there are several interesting passages when he discusses the pressure felt by him and other players when away from their family for long periods. Just a few ‘insights’: 1. Whose idea was it to print the ‘insights’ on a black background? Daft. 2. He DID mention Somerset, pace reviewer James Minifie (pp. 342 and 671-2 in the stats section). No mention of Somerset in the index, however. 3. I found the constant use of nicknames a bit irritating (eg - guys like Bic, Mabo, Hoggy and Symmo) but it does indicate the togetherness of the Australian team, though RP does not hesitate to point out times when this appeared to be less so. 4. You will pick up a number of Australian slang expressions – I was more dirty on the hundred missed than happy with the 56 scored; I was briefly cranky for playing a dud shot; I was sweet with that (a decision); … the blue I had on the plane with Paul Reiffel; … an idea that was only euchred when the Test finished a day early. 5. Lots of interesting stats. 6. A good range of colour photos, with several of his family.
I was at Edgbaston the day that Ponting scored his 10,000th Test Run and the applause round the ground was testament to the regard in which he was held as a cricketer. I didn't like Ponting as a man, but I respected him as a cricketer, but this book changed that.
This is a fascinating book about an enigmatic and complex man. Ponting comes across as a top man, utterly driven in his desire to be the very best he can. This book also offers an intriguing insight into the Australian mentality about sports and the desire to win at all costs. Packed full of anecdote about some of the great cricketers of the modern generation, including Warne, Gilchrist, Tendulkar and Lara, this offers a no holds barred look behind the scenes of international cricket, through the eyes of one of the true greats of the game.
When I finished the book I was satisfied that I had read it, and would recommmend it to any cricket fan. A jolly good read all round.
Bit long, but the guy did play for about 45 years. When I'd read it I had a new found admiration for Ricky and he comes across as a decent guy - although whoever wrote an autobiog and made themselves look like a plank?
So far so good, excellent read, massive book, so only 200 pages in and now he has just broke into Aussies team, interesting stuff about an all time great. Great price and for a used book in great condition