The Writers of Wales Database
Tel: 01522 542555/ 07980 541899
Grahame went to school in Lincolnshire before joining the Western Mail in Cardiff in 1972. He gained an English & Politics degree at Sheffield University in 1978 and then became a BBC Wales staff news producer. After turning freelance in 1981, he worked as a reporter/presenter in their news, current affairs & sports departments as well as for the World Service. Grahame has commentated on football for BBC and commercial television and radio stations and, among other organizations, now works for the Sky Sports Football Yearbook, Talksport and BBC Radio Wales. He writes match-day programme articles for the Carling Cup Final and play-off finals.
Grahame has written a number of sports related titles which explore stories behind great clubs, victories and sports people. He has published both the official celebration of Glamorgan Cricket Club’s 1997 Championship win and Cardiff City FC’s centenary book, shared the life stories of Jan Molby and ex-Wales manager Terry Yorath, uncovered British & Irish footballers who have played just once for their country and discussed Lincoln City and Boston United during the historic 2002-03 season.
As an independent producer and director, he has also made TV & radio documentaries for BBC Wales and S4C on Hugh Morris, the ex-Glamorgan captain, Ieuan Evans, the former Welsh rugby captain, Llansantfraid F.C.’s European debut, Cardiff City’s 1999 centenary and One Cap Wonders. As well as running media training and presentation skills courses, Grahame also presents conferences and has interviewed authors at the Hay, Lincoln and Bradford Book Festivals. He has recently devised a one-man show, Football Fanatical – a light-hearted look at the language of football.
Grahame’s most recent title Six of the Best: Cricket’s Most Famous Over (Celluloid, 2008) is on the long list of the Cricket Society and MCC Book of the Year 2009. This award has previously been won by people like EW Swanton, Simon Barnes and Mihir Bose. The short list will be announced at the end of January 2009.
With respect to C’Mon City! (Seren, 1999):
"…A new and readably thorough history…the rededication of the updated headstone in the cemetery is probably the most touching part of the club’s centenary celebrations…"
"…An absorbing account of the development of the Bluebirds…"
"…A very good book. It’s easy to read, entertaining and what’s more, it’s about a subject close to all our hearts. Verdict – excellent, if a little romantic – 9 and a half /10…"
Thin Blue Line fanzine
"…The definitive chronicle of the Bluebirds first century is not simply the history of a soccer club: it is also the social history of our very own patch…this book opened my eyes…"
South Wales Echo
"…An informative centenary history…a worthy story…"
With respect to One Cap Wonders (Robson, 2001):
"…An excellent thought-provoking read. It can claim to be a work of studied journalism rather than a quirky idea, too…a hugely entertaining tome..."
Manchester Evening News
"...An excellently put-together work in which Lloyd’s policy of in-depth interviews...pays high dividends...this is a work...with many enthralling tales..."
The Independent (Book of the Week)
"...Lloyd’s fastidious research is as rewarding as his title is definitive..."
"...Lloyd’s research is meticulous and the interviews he conducted are detailed...a worthwhile tribute to men who achieved much but often still deserved better..."
Times Football Handbook (Book of the Month)
"...A fascinating and revealing story...an enjoyable read with many interesting facts unearthed, the research meticulous and the writing good..." Belfast Telegraph
With respect to One Hell of a Season: Imps, Pilgrims and Tales of the Unexpected (Celluloid, 2003):
"...A big-hearted and heartening tale of the league’s bargain basement..."
"...A great insight into life at the indigent end of the Football League. While obviously focused on Lincolnshire, One Hell of a Season will seem relevant to fans of any small club; and entirely irrelevant to the likes of Chelsea - which is almost the book’s point..."
"...For any football fan, One Hell of a Season is a gripping read..."
"...One Hell of a Season lifts the lid on one of the most scintillating seasons Lincolnshire’s professional football clubs have ever seen...Amusing, surprising and sometimes shocking, ..."
With respect to Hard Man, Hard Knocks (Celluloid, 2004):
"...Grahame Lloyd’s touching, tortured life of Terry Yorath is worth 10 volumes of the ghosted tripe dished up in the first-person name of David Beckham..."
"...Football every year churns out its fair share of trite, formulaic autobiographies...The same cannot be said for the painfully honest offering from former Wales manager Terry Yorath, who knows better than most that the legendary Bill Shankly got it wrong when he claimed football was more important than life or death. This very different footballing story will hopefully be the catharsis that finally allows him to live with himself..."
"...The pain of every day since his 15-year-old son suffered a fatal heart attack is etched in the pages of this bare-all book..."
"...To be honest, I thought it would bore me rigid...I am a self-confessed football novice. But from page 10 I was hooked. If it arrives in your Christmas stocking this year, don’t leave it on the bookshelf. You won’t be disappointed..."
Huddersfield Town match programme
With respect to Six of the Best: Cricket’s Most Famous Over (Celluloid, 2008)
“...My cricket book of the year is Grahame Lloyd’s Six of the Best: Cricket’s Most Famous Over (Celluloid) which tells of Garry Sobers’s fabled five minutes of smiling mayhem – the great man’s unbreakable record when he hit six sixes in a single over bowled by Glamorgan’s Malcolm Nash on the historic old St Helen’s ground at Swansea in 1968.
With due diligence and stylish pace, Lloyd interviews every single person remotely concerned with the feat – batsmen, bowlers, fieldsmen, umpires, broadcasters, watchers, even the schoolboy who found (and auctioneers who tried to sell) the sixth and final lost ball in the street gutter as it ‘ran all the way down to Swansea.’ The skillfully wrought Six of the Best is the nearest I can imagine to a perfect book...”
The Oldie Sports Books of 2008, Frank Keating, December 2008
“...This is a book that exemplifies all that is best in cricket writing. Diligent research, a great deal of time and sympathetic interviewing has gone into the mix but above all, the book has ‘readability.’ The reader knows what happened, he or she will have seen the footage but the skill of an author is to make you want to read on to the end regardless. Grahame Lloyd achieves this handsomely. Recommended unhesitatingly...”
“...Cricket enthusiasts everywhere will love it...”
“...Nine marks out of ten…a superbly researched book…a thoroughly enjoyable read, the more so for the insights it provides into all the characters on the field that day, for telling the stories of their sharply differing subsequent fortunes in the game and what they made of their lives after cricket…”
Association of Cricket Statisticians and Historians
“...An informed and interesting, well-written book...”
Cricket Memorabilia Society
“...There is so much more to the book than just the bare facts which makes it a must-read for both avid fans of the game and the casual reader. The author’s passion for his subject shines through. This was truly a labour of love...”
Nottingham Evening Post
“...Four and a half marks out of five. One book on six balls: that is some achievement, not least because the events of that over are familiar to most followers of cricket.Grahame Lloyd has provided fresh detail and a seasoned perspective on one of the most celebrated of sporting events…it is fascinating stuff...”
“...This is much more than a literary reprise of five famous minutes at Swansea… Grahame Lloyd has given us a detailed, illuminating and timely account of the day bowler Malcolm Nash was so memorably savaged. It’s an engrossing, well-written record of human interest, with the humour as well as the anguish...”
West Country Life
“...Not many five-minute passages of sport inspire a 223-page book. Six of the Best, a handsome little volume, tells the story of what the author reasonably claims to be cricket’s most famous over...”
“...The most descriptive account yet of six balls...”
“...A fascinating and alternative insight into one of cricket’s most legendary moments...”
“...An outstandingly in-depth review of a five-minute event which, even 40 years on, is still remembered so vividly by so many cricket lovers...”
Western Daily Press
“...One of the finest cricket books of 2008…Grahame Lloyd’s Six of the Best (Celluloid, £14.99) takes a documentary approach to the most famous over of all time, when on Saturday August 31 1968, at St Helen’s in Swansea, Garry Sobers, then captain of Nottinghamshire, hit six sixes in an over from the unfortunate Malcolm Nash. Smashing stuff in every sense...”
Daily Telegraph’s 2008 Round-up, Andrew Baker, 27th Nov 2008
“...A wonderfully detailed and enjoyable ride through the drama of that day…a well-constructed and intelligent book, thoroughly researched, that does ample justice to Sobers’ monumental feat...”
“...A masterly re-telling of a significant event in the history of sport...”
“...Every so often, a book lands on our desk that feels so magical that it could have sprung up straight from the ground. This book, small and modest but with multitudes of what cricket really means, has to be one of them. It’s necessarily exhaustive…but the testimonies are so lovingly arranged, with the schoolboy’s penchant for stats and derring-do zinging off every page, that you happily go with it…the fullness hints at its greatest charm. For what Lloyd has managed to do is stitch a sporting miracle, delivered by a true god of the game, into the sprawling multi-coloured fabric of cricket’s higgledy patchwork. Put another way, Sobers may be God, but the big lad’s nothing without his apostles...”
Book of the Month, All Out Cricket magazine
Daffodil Days: Glamorgan’s Glorious Summer (Gomer, 1998)
Jan the Man: From Anfield to Vetch Field (Gollancz)
C’Mon City! (Seren, 1999)
One Cap Wonders (Robson, 2001)
One Hell of a Season: Imps, Pilgrims and Tales of the Unexpected (Celluloid, 2003)
Hard Man, Hard Knocks (Celluloid, 2004)
Six of the Best: Cricket’s Most Famous Over (Celluloid, 2008)
Who Needs Mourinho? (We've Got Our Physio): The Nigel Adkins Story (co-writer) (Celluloid, 2009)
Six of the Best: Cricket’s Most Famous Over (Celluloid, 2008)
A book celebrating the 40th anniversary of Garry Sobers hitting six sixes off one over for the first time in first-class cricket. As well as the memories of Sobers and bowler Malcolm Nash, Six of the Best: Cricket’s Most Famous Over by Grahame Lloyd, features the recollections of the surviving members of the Glamorgan and Nottinghamshire teams who took part in the historic game at St Helen’s in Swansea on 31st August 1968.
The book also casts new doubts on the authenticity of the ball sold at auction for £26,400 nearly two years ago and explains how Sobers’ amazing achievement came to be recorded by BBC Wales - thanks to a cricket-mad cameraman who asked the director on the day to keep the cameras rolling. Among those recalling the events of that momentous afternoon are the Nottinghamshire non-striker, John Parkin and Glamorgan fielder Roger Davis who caught the fifth ball of the over before tumbling over the boundary – thus nullifying the catch. But for an experimental change to Law 35 – which stated that “the fieldsman must have no part of his body grounded outside the playing area in the act of making the catch and afterwards” – Sobers would have been out.
This fascinating ball-by-ball account of the five minutes of mayhem also reveals what happened to the players who took part in the game, to the two umpires and to the bat and the ball which was found in a nearby street by schoolboy Richard Lewis. As well examining the history of big-hitting before Sobers’ feat, Six of the Best features the three occasions on which six sixes have been hit off an over since 1968 by Ravi Shastri (1985), Herschelle Gibbs (2007) and Yuvraj Singh (2007).
The book includes a range of photographs from the original BBC Wales footage of the over - including the six sixes and the controversial fifth ball ’catch’. BBC Radio Wales broadcast an hour-long documentary about the six sixes on Monday 25th August, 2008.
To purchase this title from amazon.co.uk, please click on its front cover above
Eligible Writers on Tour subjects offered:
1. Read and discuss own work
2. The craft of writing reminiscence and autobiography
3. Poetry: performance/ reading - part of one-man show on the language of football
AGE RANGE: Adults/ older school pupils