Rating: 5 out of 5, without question.
Why, in a (long) sentence: It is a very unusual autobiography, where the writer has paid scant attention to being politically correct (nudge nudge SRT) and while telling his life’s story, also offered some unique perspectives, all very well written to boot.
The antistable review
This is wonderfully written and timely autobiography that needed to be written. England cricket has become shockingly inward looking and self deluding over the years where somehow all involved – the fan, the administrator, the player – are guardians of morality in their minds. Guarding the game from these terrible Indians the audacious new rich.
In reality, the country that hates the IPL and blames it for all the ills of the game, whether a player’s injury or a spinner’s skils, bent over backwards for Stanford’s dirty money. The Sky deal, the helicopter landing on Lords, and the curbs on player freedom to benefit their own sponsors, all point to a greater degree of cynical and mercenary attitude amongst the ECB and English cricket setup than exists in India. KP talks about this in a way nobody in England has the guts to.
While preaching to everyone with moral certitude they have been openly encouraging poor behaviour from their fast bowlers toward other teams as well as allowing a group of bullies to make life difficult for a group of their own players viewed as different. Toward other teams their attitude is adequately reflected in the torrent of abuse Jimmy Anderson directed at Jadeja before finally getting physical, and proceeding to lie about it in a court. The attitude toward team mates is well reflected at where the careers of their most talented, such as KP, Eoin Morgan, Trott, Bell, Panesar, Samit Patel have gone. KP also talks about these in depth.
The way KP played his cricket, and respected his opponents has recieved recognition by his peers around the world, not only in South Africa. Anderson, Broad, Flower, Swann and the rest can hardly say so. I remember his behaviour and leadership in India in 2008, and also his fabulous innings of 186 against us in that 2-1 victory and have to say, the powerful around him look more little and petty in comparison as the day passes and more things come out.