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Regional journalist shortlisted for prestigious cricket writing prize

wars-of-the-white-rosesA regional sports journalist’s tale of “civil war” has been nominated for a prestigious cricket writing award.

Stuart Rayner, who works for Newcastle-based titles The Chronicle, The Journal and the Sunday Sun, has been shortlisted for the Cricket Writers’ Club Book of the Year award for ‘The War of the White Roses’.

The book chronicles Yorkshire County Cricket Club between 1968 and 1986, and centres on the damage done by 18 years of infighting centred on one of England’s most brilliant but most divisive players, Geoffrey Boycott.

Other books nominated include the autobiography of former Lancashire and England batsman Graeme Fowler, and Simon Lister’s Fire in Babylon, inspired by the film of the same name chronicling the West Indies team of the 1970s and 1980s.

Stuart told HTFP: “It’s an honour to be shortlisted alongside such great titles for a prestigious award, particularly as this is my first book, and I am humbled by the Cricket Writers’ Club’s decision.

“Graeme Fowler’s autobiography is a very good read covering some important issues, and if it is half as good as the film I expect to really enjoy Simon Lister’s Fire in Babylon when I finally get round to reading that. I’m sure the other titles on the shortlist are very good too, so I feel a bit of an imposter sharing a billing with so many excellent authors.

“I’m very grateful to Pitch Publishing for giving me the opportunity to write the book, and their commitment to good sports writing is fantastic to see.”

The winner will be announced at the club’s 70th anniversary lunch, which will be held in London on Tuesday.

“I really enjoyed writing The War of the White Roses, so to know others have taken a little pleasure from it too is very fulfilling.”