The day after W G Grace’s funeral, a writer placed an advertisement in The Sportsman announcing that he had been commissioned to produce a biography of the great man, asking all those who had known him to come forward. And they did, in droves. Since then, there has been a steady stream of books on the greatest cricketer of his age, culminating, a hundred years after his death, in these two very different volumes.
In his excellent biography Richard Tomlinson forensically examines the myths that surround WG. Seldom has a sporting career spawned so many anecdotes and untruths. Born in 1848, WG defied expectation at every turn. He qualified as a doctor, then spent much of his life on the field, only treating patients