Bats, balls, bails and lens!
A part of mid-day Group Sports Editor Clayton Murzello's collection will be on display at a photography book exhibition to mark World Photography Day on August 17 at the NCPA. Here are his top five picks for books on cricket photography
Pageant of cricket by David Frith
The finest book of cricket photographs is also the thickest ever published (640 pages). Frith, a historian par excellence and more than an avid collector of cricket memorabilia, put together this splendid 1987 illustrated history of the willow game with 2000 paintings, magazine covers and photographs (some shot by him) dating back to 1739 till the 1986-87 Ashes series. "The book aims to enlighten a little, enlighten a lot," wrote Frith in the Introduction and it does much more! A painting of a galaxy of cricket greats, including our very own Sunil Gavaskar and Bishan Singh Bedi makes up the front and back covers.
Simply amazing: Australia's Eddie Gilbert, the Aboriginal fast bowler of the 1930s captured by Frith in a mental asylum in 1972.
India interest image: Ajit Wadekar waving to the crowd on either side of a packed Mumbai street in a motorcade on the team's arrival from their victorious 1971 series in England.
An eye for cricket by Patrick Eagar and John Arlott
Cricket's most famous and celebrated photographer, Patrick Eagar teamed up with illustrious writer/broadcaster John Arlott in 1979 to project the true essence of cricket to armchair followers, spectators and the practitioners of the game. The book is divided into three segments—The Play, The Playgoers and The Players. The West Indians have always appreciated Eagar's work and the pick of the images of cricketers from the Caribbean is the one where Viv Richards, the maroon West Indies cap firmly on his head, has sweat dripping his forehead and cheek.
Simply amazing: A series of pictures showing how West Indies paceman Michael Holding clean bowled eight England batsmen over two innings in The Oval Test of 1976.
India interest image: India's flamboyant wicketkeeper Farokh Engineer colliding with all-rounder Tony Greig in the Old Trafford Test of 1974.
Fields of glory—a celebration of cricket in Australia by Viv Jenkins
Viv Jenkins was the Australian Cricket Board's official photographer when he came up with this publication in 1995. The book captures the good (cricketing foes Dennis Lillee and Ian Botham sharing a drink by the poolside in South Australia in 1982), the bad (Aussie fast bowler Terry Alderman's shoulder being dislocated after a scuffle with an intruder in 1982) and the ugly (Javed Miandad and Dennis Lillee threatening to get physical with each other in 1981) of cricket played on Australian soil.
Simply amazing: West Indies's batting icon Viv Richards having a shower after a hard day's play.
India interest image: Mohinder Amarnath with a sheepish grin after being declared out handled the ball in the 1985-86 tri-series.
Cricket—the game behind the game by Mark Ray
Cricket legend Allan Border couldn't be more right about the images in his Foreword—"Each has a story to tell, and together they provide a superb presentation of the 'game' behind the modern game." Many of the photographs featured by New South Wales-born cricket writer and photographer Mark Ray in the book were shot in between, before and after writing his pieces for publications like The Examiner, Sydney Morning Herald, Melbourne Herald and The Sunday Age.Since Ray was also a first-class cricketer for Tasmania and New South Wales, he got access to the dressing room from where he shot his Tasmanian teammate Patrick Patterson, the West Indian fast bowler relaxing on a massage table at Brisbane
Simply amazing: Australian spin great-turned journalist Bill O'Reilly handwriting his report at the Adelaide Oval press box in 1987.
India interest image: Sachin Tendulkar waiting for his turn to bat in the nets with his thigh pad worn outside before the Brisbane Test of the 1991-92 series.
Cricket impressions by Adrian Murrell
Several images from this book were seen in The Sportstar magazine during the 1980s. Yet, one would want to pore over them again. Murrell thrived in the 1980s, but he also shot images of Kerry Packer's World Series Cricket and even covered the 1979 Australia v India Test at Mumbai. He shot Viv Richards on a beach in Antigua during England's ill-fated 1985-86 tour of the Caribbean and while that must have been pleasant, what wasn't was capturing Mike Gatting's broken nose courtesy a Malcolm Marshall delivery in a one-day international at Jamaica in February 1986.
Simply amazing: Australian batsman Kim Hughes taking evasive action to avoid a Colin Croft delivery as well as a "frenzied seagull" (as mentioned in the caption) during the Adelaide Test of the 1979-80 series.
India interest image: British prime minister Margaret Thatcher paying her last respects to Indira Gandhi in 1984.
What: Photography book exhibition
When: August 17, 12 pm to 8 pm
Where: NCPA's Piramal Art Gallery, Nariman Point
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