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Life and career
David Frith was born in London on 16 March 1937. His family moved to Sydney in 1949 when he was eleven. Early in his career he worked for the The Daily Mirror and the Commonwealth Bank at Cronulla. He played his early cricket for the famous St George club and then Paddington before returning to England in 1964.
Specialising in Ashes Test match history, Frith has written dozens of books on both cricket in modern times and cricket of the past. His major works include My Dear Victorious Stod (a biography of A.E.Stoddart), a lavishly illustrated history of England versus Australia, Silence of the Heart (on cricket's suicides, an expansion of his earlier book By His Own Hand), The Fast Men, The Slow Men (about fast bowlers and spinners respectively), Pageant of Cricket (the only cricket book to have as many as 2000 pictures), Caught England, Bowled Australia (autobiography), The Trailblazers (the first English tour of Australia, in 1861-62), The Archie Jackson Story (biography) and Bodyline Autopsy. The catalogue of his vast collection ran to 1100 pages. He has also been involved in producing cricket videos, which have been extremely successful.
David Frith famously commented that India should withdraw from the World Cup if they didn't improve. When they won it in 1983 he was pleased to (literally) eat his words, with the help of some red wine.
In 2003 he became the first author to win the Cricket Society's Book of the Year award three times, and was also a finalist in the William Hill Sports Book awards for his Bodyline Autopsy. The book also won Wisden's book of the year and, in January 2010, it won Cricketweb's award for "book of the decade". In his assessment, Martin Chandler wrote:
"Autopsy" is a magnificent book possessing a vibrancy and objectivity that when I first read it I found quite remarkable. It is, without question, the CW "Book of the Decade" and were there any prospect of my being around to collect I would certainly place a large wager on whoever is writing this feature in 90 years time confirming it as CW "Book of the Century".
His co-written history of the Australian Cricket Board won the Australian Cricket Society book award in 2007, and in 2011 David Frith was given the Cricket Society's Ian Jackson Award for Distinguished Services to Cricket.
In 2013 he was awarded honorary life membership of the Association of Cricket Statisticians and Historians, and wrote a further book, 'Guildford's Cricket Story', which revealed his adopted home town's unique claims to being the 'cradle of cricket'.