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Interesting: My Autobiography By Steve Davis with Lance Hardy

Release date: 18th April, 2015
Publisher: Ebury Press

List Price: £16.99
Our Price: £9.00
You Save: £7.99 (47%)
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Is it really thirty years since Steve ‘Interesting’ Davis and the Ulsterman with a permanent smile, the bespectacled Dennis Taylor, contested snooker’s most compelling world championship finale, now commonly referred to as the ‘Black Ball Final’?

The BBC’s largest-ever post-midnight audience, 18.5 million people, stayed up to watch as the final went to the last frame. Davis led 62-44 with just 22 points on the table; the denouement was pure drama as the world title was to be determined by one player’s ability to pot the final black ball. Taylor did so, at the fourth attempt, leaving an ashen-faced Davis visibly distraught.

That he would return and claim the world championship title three more times (and six in all) is testimony to the man’s determination. He later won the BBC sports personality of the year award and was recognised with royal honours. His autobiography is, arguably, overdue.

However, if you’re expecting fireworks, revelations of womanising, drug-taking, gambling and heavy drinking, then take a look at this book’s cover. It’s Steve Davis we’re talking about, not some overpaid athlete who employs his own PR firm and is rarely seen sans arm candy.

Yet Davis's story is often engaging, from his London council house roots, where his fascination with the game was encouraged by his father, a snooker fan who worked on the buses, to the point at which he came to the attention of an accountant turned snooker club proprietor, Barry Hearn, who recognised Davis's enormous potential. The pair would form a partnership that has lasted to this day, their respective skills continually complementing each other, making them both very rich men.

Davis won his first world snooker championship in 1981 aged just 23; he soon became snooker’s biggest star, winning a series of titles across the globe. One of this book’s faults, however, (unless you’re an avid snooker fan) is the endless detail it provides of Davis’s dominance in matches against the game’s other big players. He acquired the ‘interesting’ moniker during the 1980s, initially a satirical epithet that served the producers of Spitting Image well, but some of this book’s meticulous detail does little to dispel the notion that David possesses a genuinely interesting personality.

Indeed, it could be argued that this book is only a partial autobiography for we learn plenty about his snooker life, but little of it beyond the green baize. Pity, because that would have been interesting.


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