The Art of Cricket
|The Art of Cricket|
|Author||Sir Donald Bradman|
|Publisher||Hodder & Staughton, London|
|Media type||Hard cover|
The Art of Cricket is an instructional book on the game of cricket written by Sir Don Bradman in 1958. Despite its age, the book is still widely regarded as one of the best coaching manuals available for technique and tactics and is a clear demonstration of Bradman's skill as a student of the game as well as a master of its play. It is well illustrated with many black-and-white photographs and diagrams.
Bradman wrote in the foreword:
In 1934 I wrote a short instructional book on How to play cricket At that time I was somewhere along the road of my international playing career which ended in 1948. With certain interruptions brought about by illness, World War II, etc., I had by then been on the stage for 20 years, and in my judgement that was long enough. Whilst my mental powers may still have been adequate for the task, my muscles certainly were not.
My natural impulse was to put on paper my theories about how the game should be played but eventually thought perhaps it was my duty so to do - not briefly, as in 1934, but at some length, and drawing upon the many subsequent years of experience. The task has been accomplished. I have tried faithfully to portray the many aspects of cricket as they appear to me.
From the Test cricketer may I request tolerance for the space taken in describing simple things (such as a yorker). He may feel they are superfluous, but this book is designed to help all classes of cricketers, including, children. Then to the youngster who may find the technical portions somewhat advanced may I just say - pass them by for the time being. Concentrate on the more elementary matters and come back to the Test match stage refinements when you are older.
The illustrations are not perfect but nevertheless they have been carefully selected to portray what was required, and action, rather than photographic excellence, has dictated my choice.If this book can be the means of kindling enthusiasm in the breasts of some youngsters or of assisting older players to overcome the game’s complexities, I shall be rewarded for the time spent in compiling it.
A revised soft cover edition was published in 1984, by Hodder & Stoughton, Sydney with 255 pages.
The Bradman Museum released a multimedia CD-ROM version of the book in 1998.
|“||Almost 40 years ago when first produced, The Art of Cricket was acclaimed as the most brilliant coaching book ever written and illustrated. In some ways that might not be surprising because the young cricketer, Don Bradman, who later was knighted for his services to the game, had the most incisive mind and was the clearest thinker I found in the time I was a player and captain. It was no coincidence that he was able to put down his thoughts on the matter of coaching, and the need or otherwise for it, in such a concise manner. Although the finest batsman the world has ever seen, he played his cricket with the creed of keeping it simple and that line of thinking has continued throughout the pages and photographs in this book.
You will see that it is not a vast book which is quite deliberate from a man who could always perfectly convey his precise meaning and intentions with economy of words. In 1958 he managed to slice through the rhetoric of cricket coaching to produce a book that is able to be perfectly understood by pupil and teacher, a trait in modern-day coaching which does not necessarily apply. Despite the passage of time, the book holds the same position as was the case way back in 1958.
It is brilliant.
|“||Sir Donald clearly bent himself to the task of writing it with that single-minded concentration which raised his batting to such sustained heights. He indulges no literary excesses but impressively – and quite characteristically – employs words with precision, undeterred by theories of style from using the same word a second time on the heels of the first when, in fact, that word is the only one which perfectly suits his purpose. Superficially, The Art of Cricket is a book of instruction: to the interested reader, however, it becomes much more than that. It is a reflection of the author's approach to the game and a careful gathering of his thinking about it, presented with superbly chosen illustrations. So it becomes the nearest approach yet achieved to an epitome of cricket. That the chapters on batting, fielding and captaincy should be illuminating was to be expected: that those on bowling should be so profound is a measure of the great batsman's study of his adversaries. To the young player this must be an impressively revealing study: while, at the other pole of play, it is hard to believe that even a Test cricketer could read it without profit. It has been said that Sir Donald, in his cricket, allied to his physical gifts that type of genius which Carlyle described as 'an infinite capacity for taking pains'. Those who never saw Bradman bat can be convinced of that second quality in him by reading his book.||”|
Other books by Don Bradman
- How to play Cricket (1934)
- Farewell to Cricket (1950), a volume of reminiscences
Other books of the same title
Warwick Armstrong wrote a cricket primer of the same title, first published by Methuen, London in 1922.
- The Art of Cricket Freetime books website