Search for your sports books:

Featured Publisher: Pitch Publishing
The incomparable range of sports books produced by Pitch Publishing over the past few years has ensured theyÕve secured a place as one of the UKÕs leading publishers of sporting material.

From the unashamedly nostalgic Got, Not Got and the thought-provoking If Only: An Alternative History of the Beautiful Game, to Andrew MurtaghÕs superbly-written Gentleman and a Player, Pitch Publishing are always likely to come up with something different. Take a look at their current range: www.pitchpublishing.co.uk




Read Review
<back to archive

Roger Federer: Spirit of a Champion By Chris Bowers

Release date: 01st June, 2009
Publisher: John Blake Publishing

List Price: £7.99
Our Price: £4.79
You Save: £3.2 (40%)
Buy Now

Roger Federer
Spirit of a Champion
By Chris Bowers
John Blake Publishing

Sportsbookofthemonth.com price: £4.79, saving 40% on rrp (paperback)

On Monday of this week, with Rafael Nadal having departed Paris's 16th arrondissement, Roger Federer had, on paper, a straightforward-looking French Open tie against the world's number 63, Tommy Haas. The Swiss appeared a little nervous, for he clearly appreciated that with Nadal out, he now had an excellent opportunity to secure a first-ever clay court grand slam and so add to his existing 13 major tennis titles.

In the hot Parisian afternoon sun, Haas, a former world number 2 and two sets to the good, was on the cusp of breaking Federer to take a 5-3 lead in the third set, but from somewhere, Federer summoned the spirit of a true champion. Not for him the ignominy of a straight sets defeat; although on occasion, he looks anything like a fighter, last Monday the Swiss dug deep, Haas faded and Federer won a classic five-setter. In so doing, he edged himself closer to equalling Pete Sampras's 14 slams.

As we go to print, Federer still has his chance to win a first French Open, but if author Chris Bowers needed a performance upon which to hang the sub-title of his latest book about the Swiss tennis ace, Monday's offered it in spades.

Federer has always refused to sanction an 'official' biography, but he did nothing to prevent Bowers adding to his earlier work, Fantastic Federer, published three years ago. It helps that Bowers has known the Swiss for years and first interviewed him after he had won the boys' singles at Wimbledon in 1998. He has produced another compelling read.

Bowers' earlier biography showed several sides to Federer's personality and it's fair to say he's not always been the epitome of studious calm we see on court. As a youngster, he was often tempestuous, awkward and frustrated until his mother famously told him, "When you have these outbursts, you're telling your opponent that you're ready for him to beat you. You're sending out invitations. Is that what you want?"

Clearly, the young Swiss didn't and so set about capitalising upon his height and natural sporting ability.

Today, a more mature Federer describes his playing style as 'modern retro', something which Bowers believes has both attracted spectators who are sometimes ambivalent about tennis and has protected the great sportsman's body. His elegance is obvious, a style, the author suggests, which is "a modern version of the classic technique that evolved in the era of wooden rackets."

But style and technique will only take a champion so far and Federer is not without spirit. "If he can handle his declining years with a feistiness that sees him fight to beat players increasingly fancied to beat him, it can only add further lustre to his legend," writes Bowers. Anyone who saw him overcome Haas in Paris will acknowledge that Federer remains feisty.

As for his position in sport's pantheon, Bowers provides an argument likely to appeal to any sports fan by placing Federer alongside his legendary contemporaries - Tiger Woods, Lance Armstrong and Michael Schumacher. In terms of athleticism, Bowers suggests that Federer is at least their equal. What he proved earlier this week is that like this famous trio, he possesses that elusive quality so many do not have - the spirit of a champion.


<back to archive


MoneyMapp


SBOTM Current Top 10

The Farther Corner By Harry Pearson
Simon & Schuster
Read Review Buy Now
The Strenuous Life: Theodore Roosevelt and the Making of the American Athlete By Ryan Swanson
Diversion Books
Read Review Buy Now
Running the World By Nick Butter
Bantam Books
Read Review Buy Now
British Football’s Greatest Grounds One hundred must-see football venues By Mike Bayly
Pitch Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
Macho Time The Meteoric Rise and Tragic Fall of Hector Camacho By Christian Giudice
Hamilcar Books
Read Review Buy Now
The Man of All Talents The Extraordinary Life of Douglas Clark By Steven Bell
Pitch Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
When The World Stops Watching By Damian Lawlor
Black & White Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
The Men Who Raised the Bar The evolution of the highest individual score in Test cricket By Chris Waters
Wisden
Read Review Buy Now
Wings of Change How the world’s biggest energy drink manufacturer made a mark in football By Karan Tejwani
Pitch Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
Jack Dempsey And The Roaring Twenties By Thomas Myler
Know The Score Books
Read Review Buy Now

Amazon’s top 6 best-sellers

© Sharks Media Ltd 2004 – 2012. Site designed and maintained by Marcus Hamblett for Furydesign.