Fury’s can­didly stark au­to­bi­og­ra­phy proves knock­out with judges

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Sport - Sports books By Tom Mor­gan

Tyson Fury has scooped the Tele­graph Sports Book of the Year 2020 for his au­to­bi­og­ra­phy chron­i­cling his ex­tra­or­di­nary re­cov­ery from drugs and al­co­hol de­spair to win­ning heavy­weight world ti­tle belts.

Be­hind The Mask, which charts the rise and fall and rise again of the self-pro­claimed “Gypsy King”, was also named au­to­bi­og­ra­phy of the year in a unan­i­mous de­ci­sion by the judg­ing panel.

The book was one of 10 win­ners on the night, with Ed­die Jones, the Eng­land coach, also ex­press­ing de­light at win­ning the Rugby Writ­ers’ Book of the Year ahead of ef­forts from coach­ing ri­val War­ren Gat­land and for­mer Lions cap­tain Sam War­bur­ton.

Jones’s ac­count, My Life and Rugby, co-writ­ten with Don­ald McRae, was de­scribed by judges as be­ing told with “un­flinch­ing hon­esty”. “It’s nice that peo­ple have en­joyed the book and hope­fully they’ve got some­thing out of it as well,” Jones said.

Daily Tele­graph cricket writer Tim Wig­more and coau­thor Fred­die Wilde were among the prizes, with Cricket 2.0 named the Heartaches Cricket Book of the Year. Their book, chart­ing the rise of Twenty20, was al­ready Wis­den Cricket Book of the Year.

The Na­tional Lit­er­acy Trust helped launch the in­au­gu­ral Chil­dren’s Sports Book of the Year, which was handed to Matt Old­field’s Un­be­liev­able Foot­ball. Sir Chris Hoy, Eng­land foot­baller Casey Stoney and BBC Sport’s Clare Bald­ing had also been short­listed.

The Pin­sent Ma­sons In­ter­na­tional Sports Book of the Year was awarded to Casey Le­gler’s God­speed, a raw ac­count of her life as teenage Olympic swim­mer and sub­se­quent sur­vival from hor­rific abuse, al­co­holism and drug use. Brian Moore, the Tele­graph colum­nist and chair­man of the judg­ing cat­e­gory, said the book was “an amaz­ing and pow­er­ful mem­oir and a wor­thy win­ner”.

This year’s Gen­eral Out­stand­ing Sports Writ­ing Award win­ner was Mind Games, an in­sider’s guide to the psy­chol­ogy of elite ath­letes from Olympic rower An­nie Ver­non, who won sil­ver in Bei­jing, along­side Dame Kather­ine Grainger, Debbie Flood and Frances Houghton.

Adam Sills, Head of Sport at The Tele­graph, said: “The Sports Book Awards have de­liv­ered another great short­list and cam­paign this year. We are happy to be once again sup­port­ing these awards and the work they do to high­light out­stand­ing sports writ­ing and pub­lish­ing.”

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