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Unforgiven, The: Missionaries or Mercenaries? The Untold Story of the Rebel West Indian Cricketers Who Toured Apartheid South Africa: Missionaries or ... Cricketers Who Toured Apartheid South Africa Hardcover – 20 April 2020

4.6 out of 5 stars 139 ratings

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Product details

  • Publisher : PITCH PUBLISHING (20 April 2020)
  • Language : English
  • Hardcover : 256 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 1785315323
  • ISBN-13 : 978-1785315329
  • Dimensions : 16.51 x 3.05 x 24.13 cm
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 139 ratings

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Review

"It was a hopelessly naive comment but, rather than simply condemn, Gray’s skill is not just in unearthing these former cricketers ― including Rowe, living out his years in Florida ― but in allowing each to relive their fateful choice to go to South Africa... Gray paints a compelling portrait of each of them in a moving and thought-provoking read." Matt Dickinson, Sunday Times Sports Books of the Year; "Ashley Gray's thoroughly engaging dissection of the tours examines the moral complexity of the matter and the long-term effects on the rebels." Steven Carroll, The Age; "One can feel nothing but admiration for the tenacity of Gray's pursuit... The Unforgiven is richly sewn with tragedy... It is a truism to say history is written by the victors... The Unforgiven belatedly gives the losers their say." Gideon Haigh; "Possibly the biggest surprise of Ashley Gray's painstaking, sometimes harrowing, awkward and amusing, investigation of those tours is that it is highly nuanced. In The Unforgiven: Mercenaries or Missionaries?, Gray digs beneath the obvious motivation of money to discover that for many of the rebels, the tour was either their only hope of carving a career from cricket or their way of retaliating against the closed shop they perceived the West Indies side to be... We are left feeling the rebels were neither mercenaries nor missionaries, just lost souls." Alyson Rudd, The Times; "Sometimes it helps to come at these things from an angle. There's an excellent new book about cricket and race called The Unforgiven by the Australian writer Ashley Gray. The Unforgiven tells the story of West Indian rebel tours to apartheid South Africa in the 1980s, focusing on the later lives of those players who took the Blood Rand." Barney Ronay, The Guardian; "Gray, an Australian journalist, is unflinching in his portrayal of Murray and the other rebels... [he] is unsparing, if also deeply humane, in his account of the players' fates, those castigated by their communities as race traitors: "Cashed up, but ground down, some coped with ostracism by deserting their homelands, others sought refuge in drugs and religion. The tyranny of inter-island distance ensured that there would be no genuine rebel brotherhood. They were on their own"." --Alex Wade, The Times Literary Supplement; "A powerful and necessary book... brings the rebels out from the demonised whole and gives air and dignity to what are for the most lives blighted and broken by the decision to take the money and go." Wisden Cricket Monthly; "Gray tells the rebels' stories with insight and panache" David Brearley, The Daily Telegraph; "I finished The Unforgiven in one afternoon. It was compelling... one of the best cricket books I've read." Ken Piesse, Cricket Books (Australia); "The Unforgiven is riveting." Sharda Ugra, Senior editor, ESPNcricinfo; "The Unforgiven should be mandatory reading for anyone genuinely interested... in Caribbean cricket history." Fazeer Mohammed, Trinidad Express; "The Unforgiven is a fascinating and engrossing book and Ashley Gray deserves great credit for bringing the story of these West Indian cricketers to our book shelves." Andrew Roberts Cricket Statistics; "Gray, who travelled to the Caribbean several times for the book, has revealed a fresh voice and a talent to be rivalled among the best cricket writers in the world." Barry Nicholls, Australian Cricket Digest; "Cricket is a game enhanced by great books and Ashley Gray's The Unforgiven is an excellent dive into one of the most intriguing stories in the sporting world." Robert Craddock, The Courier-Mail;

About the Author

Ashley Gray works as a sports writer and subeditor. His stories have appeared in Wisden Quarterly, Fox Sports, the Sydney Morning Herald, Daily Telegraph, Guardian, and All Out Cricket.

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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
139 global ratings
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Reviewed in Australia on 25 April 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic book and a great read!
By Mitchell J. Hall on 25 April 2020
After reading The Unforgiven I know I've read the definitive book on the rebel cricket tours of South Africa by the West Indies team and I've read one of the great sports books of 2020. This book has everything that I could ask for and above all honesty. It's a sign of great book when something that makes the subject look bad shows up in the book and for many of the former players that is the case.

You can tell the hard work by the author is on the page and the first hand accounts really pay off. He brings out great stories and quotes by the former team members and after years of following cricket many stories have come out that I have not read or heard of before.

The book cuts a fine balance between cricket and the social and political aspects of the tour and also brings out some hair raising stories which I was not expecting. Every chapter and every players story is its own flavour and story to itself which is why I enjoyed the book so much. If you are into cricket, sports or just looking for an intriguing story I can't recommend this book highly enough, as soon as I started reading it I just didn't stop until I got to the very end.
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Karen
5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 June 2020
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J. R. Emmerson
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, interesting, readable, vital
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 13 October 2020
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Michael1966
5.0 out of 5 stars A story of hypocrisy and betrayal
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 5 April 2021
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JA
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting review
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 28 August 2020
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John R. Challis
5.0 out of 5 stars West Indies cricketers in South Africa
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 7 August 2020
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