The Best of Irish Sports Writing 2018

The longlist for the eir Sport Book of the Year leaves few on the sideline in terms of the books that will take centre stage on the Christmas list of sporting fans this year and it shows the wide diversity of writing that has been produced.

This is the fourth year of the eir Award. 23 books in total are in the running to follow in the footsteps of the 2017 winner, ‘The Choice’ by Dublin footballer Philly McMahon as well as 2016 winner, ‘What Do You Think of That’ from Kerry footballer, Kieran Donaghy and the 2015 winner, ‘Dub Sub Confidential’ from former Dublin footballer John Leonard.

With Gaelic Games having completed a clean sweep so far it is strongly represented again through books by Sean Cavanagh, Davy Fitzgerald and Cora Staunton though there is a strong word this year for Fighter, the story of Andy Lee told in writing partnership with Niall Kelly.

The judging panel for this years’ award has also been confirmed and is drawn from leading lights across the Irish sporting media. The judging panel will be independently chaired by Mark Duncan.

“Once again, the eir sport Book of the Year has delivered a remarkably high standard of books competing for this years’ award,” said Susan Brady, Managing Director of Consumer and Small Business at eir.

“We have received a wide range of entries that cover fantastic topics and subject matters. I would like to thank our partners at Publishing Ireland and the publishing houses throughout the country without whom this award would not be such a success.”

The winning author of the eir sport Book of the Year will receive a €1,500 cash prize, a specially commissioned trophy and €10,000 worth of TV advertising on eir sport.

The final shortlist will be announced at the end of November with an awards event taking place in Dublin on Monday, 10th December where this year’s winner will be revealed.

The eir sport Book of the Year Full longlist is as follows:

The Obsession – Seán Cavanagh with Damian Lawlor

100 Greatest GAA Moments – John Scally

Winners – Hugh Cahill

Dream. Believe. Achieve. My Autobiography – Jonathan Rea

Driven – Rosemary Smith with Ann Ingle

Play It Again, Des – Des Cahill

The Boys of ’93: Derry’s All-Ireland Kings – Eamonn Coleman with Maria McCourt

Tony 10 – Declan Lynch and Tony O’Reilly

Fighter – Andy Lee with Niall Kelly

At All Costs – Davy Fitzgerald with Vincent Hogan

The Rory’s Stories Guide to Being Irish – Rory O’Connor

110% Legend – Tony Keady with Liam Hayes

Dark Arts – Mike Ross with Liam Hayes

Game Changer – Cora Staunton

The Hurlers – Paul Rouse

Dublin: The Chaos Years – Neil Cotter

The Lost Soul of Eamonn McGee – Paul D. Gibson

The Little Book of Irish Athletics – Tom Hunt

Great Moments in Irish Rugby – Sportsfile

Behind the Lines, No. 2: Great Irish Sports Stories from the 42 –

The Last Amateurs – Jonathan Bradley

The Man Who Was Never Knocked Down – Rónán Mac Iomaire

The Growth and Development of Sport in County Tipperary 1840-1880 – Pat Bracken



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