A Lot of Hard Yakka : Triumph and Torment - A County Cricketer's Life, Paperback Book

A Lot of Hard Yakka : Triumph and Torment - A County Cricketer's Life Paperback

3 out of 5 (1 rating)


Between 1980 and 1993, Simon Hughes was a regular on the county circuit, playing for Middlesex until 1991 before moving on to Durham at the end of his career.

In that time, he played alongside some of the great characters in cricket: Mike Brearley, Mike Gatting, Phil Edmonds and Ian Botham.

This is not an autobiography of a good county pro, but a look at the ups and downs, the lifestyle, the practical jokes and sheer hard yakka that make such a poorly paid, insecure job appeal to so many.

Now a respected journalist and broadcaster, Simon Hughes has written a brilliant, amusing and wrily self-depracating book, packed with hilarious and embarrassing anecdotes about some of the greatest cricketers of the last 20 years.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Headline Publishing Group
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Biography: sport
  • ISBN: 9780747255161



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I bought this book on the strength of its reviews and reputation, looking for some insight into the heroically unglamorous life of the county cricketer. I was disappointed that what I got was mostly a string of rather predictable 'humorous' anecdotes about some of the personalities in the game during the time Hughes played it. The insights, when they come, are mostly petty is-it-any-wonder grumbles about the administration of English cricket or fatuous one-line observations like "Ultimately, professional cricket is entertainment, a spectacle with performers." I considered putting it to one side about a third of the way through, but did read to the end. I wish now I'd spent that time finding another, better book on the subject. Measured against a book like Dean Wareham's Black Postcards -- another memoir of a unstarry career in a field obsessed with stars -- Hughes's account is both lightweight and a long, repetitive slog.

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