On Top Down Under
Cassell, 285 pp, $9.95 pb
Cricket is a remarkably fickle game. As Greg Chappell went about season 1981–82 collecting ducks as successfully as any Balinese farmer, Ray Robinson might well have rued his final line on one of Australia’s most-ever favoured batsmen: ‘At thirty-two he had achieved the kind of fame that needs no Academy Award of a foot-high golden statuette.’
The dilemmas of pre-final career assessment aside, this is a most welcome edition of the book first published in 1975. It is a collection of sketches to turn cricket players into meaningful people, something not readily available in Australian cricket writing, the late Jack Fingleton apart.