Halfback, half forward. . . George Gregan


My latest book in the A-Z Book Challenge is a non-fiction book.  I chose the autobiography of George Gregan.

Those of you who have been following my blog for a while will be aware that I enjoy watching rugby and have done so for quite some time.


When I lived in Canberra I used to follow the Brumbies but upon moving to Victoria I changed to the Melbourne Rebels as I would be able to go to Melbourne to see some matches.


George Gregan is a Canberra boy!  At least Canberrans claim ownership.  He grew up in Canberra and his rugby development was in Canberra which is where he became one of the Brumbies, eventually becoming the captain.  He played for the national team, the Wallabies, and became captain of the Wallabies too.  At the end of his playing days in Canberra, such was his stature in the sporting community, he had a grandstand named after him, along with Stephen Larkham,another Canberra boy.

My sister read this book when it was first published but we had moved before I had the chance to borrow her copy.  I bought this copy rather cheaply at a remainders bookshop.  Like many sporting biographies they sell well while the personality is still well-known but once they move to retirement those who would read the book have probably done so already and so the books are remaindered.

I read this book very quickly as I was keen to find out more about the person who had provided many happy memories of rugby, both in the Brumbies and the Australian Wallabies.  I was pleasantly surprised how easily it read and how he provided an insight into the workings of the administration of rugby in Australia as well as the game.  His personality shows through in his writing and it is obvious that his success was the result of hard work and gritty determination.  The press did not always give him the recognition he deserved but he can delight in the fact that he achieved the milestone of being the player who has played the most games for his country.  An awesome feat.

Obviously this is a book for rugby fans, most of whom will enjoy finding more snippets about the game that perhaps they didn’t know. There is an excellent selection of photographs to accompany the text and the last section comprises some views on George from other players in the game and from friends.

It was a delightful book, particularly for sports lovers.

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