REVIEW: Moz: My Story, by Adrian Morley and Phil Wilkinson

Adrian Morley has been around a bit. So long, in fact, that he actually played alongside Ellery Hanley, the last British hero of rugby league who was appreciated Down Under as much as Moz.

Hanley is one of an impressive array of sporting stars to have contributed chapters to Morley’s autobiography Moz: My Story. Ryan Giggs, Jamie Peacock, Ruben Wiki, Ricky Stuart and Matt King have also chipped in.

But it is only when Hanley starts his tribute that it dawns on you how long Morley has been tearing teams to bits. “I only ever played alongside Adrian for a few minutes,” writes Hanley, who left Leeds in the mid-nineties, “but I saw enough of him then to convince me he was destined to be a great player.”

Morley has been the perfect link between Hanley’s era and today’s full time athletes. At times he has been the leading forward in the world, with a game built on aggression and stamina that carried his intimidating frame through the toughest challenges rugby league has to offer.

But at other times, such as receiving a drink driving ban just weeks after an Ashes test series sponsored by the ‘Think! Don’t Drink and Drive’ campaign, he has made charmingly shambolic mistakes that hark back to the sport’s more amateur days.

Morley can at least smile now, reflecting in the epilogue that ‘by page 65 of this book I’ve been CS gassed three times. Three times! That’s just about as far removed from my life now as it could get.”

Regardless of what has happened off the field, he is a man who will be remembered for his on-field actions – and with a new contract under his arm, there is still more to come.

It is often repeated that Morley is as pleasant off the field as he is frightening on it. Moz: My Story paints a picture of a man who values family, loyalty, faith and friends, but who also knows how to have a laugh with the best of them.

Morley finishes his story by looking ahead, to a time beyond rugby league. “A time when no one will want my autograph or picture. A time when I will have to pay to keep fit, instead of being paid for it.”

He is unlikely to be forgotten.


 
Moz: My Story, by Adrian Morley and Phil Wilkinson, is available now. ISBN 978-1907637575, published by Vision Sports Publishing. Buy now and save on the cover price.

This is an edited version of a review that appears in the November 2012 issue of Forty-20 magazine. Buy the magazine to read the full, extensive review.

NEWS: Adrian Morley book signing schedule

Adrian Morley’s autobiography Moz: My Story hits the shelves on Monday 12 November. Anyone interested in getting their copy signed can catch Morley at the following venues:

Waterstones, Trafford Centre — Saturday Nov 10, 4pm
Warrington Wolves Club Shop — Monday Nov 12, 12pm
Waterstones, The Wool Exchange, Bradford — Thursday Nov 15, 12.30pm
Waterstones, Leeds — Thursday Nov 15, 5.30pm
Waterstones, Wigan — Thursday Nov 22, 6pm
Waterstones, Warrington — Saturday Nov 24, 2pm
Waterstones, Huddersfield – Wednesday, December 19, 2pm

 

FEATURE: Revealed – the top 10 rugby league books of 2010

Rugby League Books has been busy doing some research (no laughing at the back, please).

According to Amazon*, here are the 10 bestselling rugby league books (in Britain) published in 2010:

We realise this is a far from perfect exercise. It doesn’t take into account high-street sales from giants such as WHSmith or Waterstone’s, nor does it include figures from heroic independent book shops.

But hopefully it gives us at least some kind of a flavour of what’s been selling well in 2010.

And we’re sure there’s something on this list to keep interested even the most discerning reader until the start of the new season.

Enjoy!

* List compiled on January 4, 2011. Sales figures and/or rankings may have since altered.

REVIEW: Coming Clean, by Terry Newton and Phil Wilkinson

Coming Clean, by Terry Newton and Phil Wilkinson

Coming Clean, by Terry Newton and Phil Wilkinson

Terry Newton’s death was the most upsetting, gut-wrenching rugby league story of 2010.

Now Coming Clean, Newton’s autobiography that was published just weeks beforehand, stands as one of the most poignant sporting books in recent memory.

Newton had his troubles. But he was undoubtedly one of the finest hookers to grace Super League.

Leeds, Wigan, Bradford, Wakefield and Great Britain all benefited from his guile, guts and determination – not to mention his craft around the play-the-ball.

Coming Clean is Newton’s story, from signing for Warrington as a 14-year-old through to the day a letter arrived from UK Sport notifying him that he had become the first athlete in world sport to test positive for human Growth Hormone (hGH). [Read more…]