Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Roland Perry's error strewn cricket writing

Roland Perry is a well-known Australian cricket writer, particularly on Bradman and his contemporaries

They include biographies on Bradman, Miller, the Invincibles in general, a compilation on all Australian Test captains, a compilation on Bradman's selection of the best Ashes teams for both Australia and England and one on Bradman's selection of his best XI of all time.

He has actually won prizes for his writing, and is a best-seller, which I find hard to believe, given his high frequency of mistakes.

I am going to compile the instances of the errors in his books, and invite others to report them in.

The following list is in progress.

*Refers to "Nayan Mongia" as "Mayam Mongia"
*Refers to NZ off spinner "Dipak Patel" as "Dilip Patel"

*p. 246. This account of Miller's 58 in the 1948 Headingley Test is adapted from Jack Fingleton's "Brightly Fades The Don". However, Miller did not hit four sixes in this innings, as Perry implies, and mis-adapts Fingleton's account into saying so.
*p. 242. Says that Loxton and Toshack opened the bowling in the second tour game against Surrey in 1948. Toshack did not, Hamence did
*p. 238. Says that Miller made 113 in the second innings of the second tour match against Yorkshire in 1948. He made a duck
*p. 238. Says that Hamence bowled Hutton for 10 in the second innings of the same match. Hutton did not bat in the second innings
*p. 251. Says that Miller scored 2088 runs in the 1948 tour, second only to Bradman. He did not. He scored 1088. What is worse is that Perry uses this erroneous number to reach the conclusion that Miller was the most influential player in 1948 after Bradman and Morris, at the end of this chapter.

That's just in 15 pages, and those are just the ones of the top of my head.

Contradictions between MILLER'S LUCK and CAPTAIN AUSTRALIA
* Account of Lindsay Hassett making a prank visit to a random English family at night during the 1948 tour. Accounts in the two books contradict each other as to who the driver of the car was.
* Account of Miller's fight with Ian Johnson over a bowling change between Miller and Lindwall. Contradiction on which of the two was the bowler being taken off/put on.

Please share any more errors you have spotted for the benefit of other cricket readers!

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