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Who doesn't know the name Shane Warne? The Australian cricketer dominated airwaves and headlines for twenty years, and has finally become a full-time celebrity and media event, his sporting conquests and controversies receding steadily into the past. But what was it like to be there, watching Warne at his long peak, the man of a thousand international wickets, the incarnation of Australian audacity and cheek? Leading cricket writer Gideon Haigh lived the Warne era behind the scenes, when the impossible was everyday, and the sensational every other day. In On Warne, he relives the era's highs, its lows, its fun and its follies. Drawing on interviews conducted with Warne over the course of a decade, and two decades of watching him play, Haigh assesses this greatest of sportsmen as cricketer, character, comrade, newsmaker and international figure - a natural in an increasingly regimented time, a simplifier in a growingly complicated world. The result is one of the finest cricket books ever written, a whole new way of looking at its subject, at sport, and at Australia. Gideon Haigh is one of the world's best-known cricket writers. He has been a journalist for almost 30 years, writing about sport and business, and has contributed to more than 100 newspapers and magazines. His cricket writings were collected in the 2011 book Sphere of Influence. He lives in Melbourne.
'Does cricket make money in order to exist, or does it exist in order to make money?' In the last three years, cricket has changed more completely than in the preceding three decades, revolutionised by a racy new format, Twenty20, and a glamorous new competition, the Indian Premier League. How did India come to run world cricket? How did clubs owned by billionaires and Bollywood stars begin to shove international competition aside? How did money unite players and divide administrators, amid allegations of massive corruption? Gideon Haigh has followed cricket's biggest story since Kerry Packer's 'World Series' from the beginning: Sphere of Influence is the result. This insightful collection brings the struggle to save cricket's soul into sharp and disturbing focus.
For all the glamour and new-found wealth that has come to cricket thanks to the IPL, the sport has rarely faced such an uncertain future. The gold standard of cricket - Test matches - is being sidelined in some countries by the shorter forms of the game. While the sport is being transformed, administrators are struggling to keep pace with it all. Yet, despite all of this, the sport's essential elements remain in place: great games are played, new stars rise up and old stars step back and retire. In this new collection of writing, Gideon Haigh takes the pulse of the game today, and in particular looks at the decline of the sport in Australia, where the once all-conquering men in the 'baggy green' suddenly found themselves struggling to impose themselves on their opponents.
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