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About the book
  • Published: 15 May 2012
  • ISBN: 9780224083300
  • Imprint: Yellow Jersey
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $27.99

Jack Hobbs




The first comprehensive biography of the biggest run scorer that cricket has ever known

The astonishing feats of Sir Jack Hobbs continue to resonate more than a century after he first played Test cricket. During his long career that stretched from the age of W.G. Grace to the era of Don Bradman, he scored more first-class runs and centuries than any player. Even today, he remains England’s greatest run-maker in Ashes Tests. He changed the art of batting with his elegant style, and transformed the status of professional cricketers through the strength of his quiet, dignified personality.

Despite his significance in the game, there has never been a comprehensive biography of Hobbs.Now Leo McKinstry, the acclaimed author of a best-selling life of Geoff Boycott, has remedied that.

Based on a wealth of new material, including interviews with the Hobbs family, the book provides fresh insights into every aspect of his story, from his poverty-stricken upbringing in Cambridge to his central role in some of Test cricket’s most explosive series. It is a tale full of controversy, such as the previously unknown row over his actions in the First World War, when he was accused of “scandalous behaviour” by the cricket establishment. Other dramatic episodes include a bitter dispute over the England captaincy in the 1920s, as well as and two occasions when he came close to death. With its colourful detail, historical context and readable style, this ground-breaking book is an important addition to sports literature.

  • Pub date: 15 May 2012
  • ISBN: 9780224083300
  • Imprint: Yellow Jersey
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $27.99

About the Author

Leo McKinstry

Leo McKinstry is a freelance journalist and author. He has published two books on current affairs in Britain, Fit to Govern and Turning the Tide, and writes regularly for the Daily Mail and the Spectator. Born in Belfast in 1962, he is a graduate of Cambridge University. He is married and lives in Essex.


Praise for Jack Hobbs

“Leo McKinstry has written an intelligent, straightforward account of Hobbs, both as man and as cricketer”

Robert Cheshire, Literary Review

“This learned and wide-ranging book skilfully recreates a vanished world and resuscitates the reputation of one who might well be England's greatest cricketer”

Marcus Berkman, Daily Mail

“McKinstry captures the spirit of this thoroughly decent man, and also the spirit of the age where he dominated”

Michael Henderson, Spectator

“Magnificent... A tender and intriguing picture of the man”

Michael Simkins, Mail on Sunday

“It makes for excellent social history... McKinstry does an excellent job, recounting Hobb's exploits with impressive thoroughness”

Simon Wilde, Sunday Times

“Impressively researched... McKinstry does an excellent job recounting Hobbes' exploits”

Mike Atherton, The Times

“Leo McKinstry has written an intelligent, straightforward account of Hobbs, both as man and as cricketer”

Robert Cheshire, Literary Review

“This learned and wide-ranging book skilfully recreates a vanished world and resuscitates the reputation of one who might well be England's greatest cricketer”

Marcus Berkman, Daily Mail

“McKinstry captures the spirit of this thoroughly decent man, and also the spirit of the age where he dominated”

Michael Henderson, Spectator

“It makes for excellent social history... McKinstry does an excellent job, recounting Hobb's exploits with impressive thoroughness”

Simon Wilde, Sunday Times

“Magnificent... A tender and intriguing picture of the man”

Michael Simkins, Mail on Sunday


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