Shadows on the Pitch
August, 2018

The Australian cricket team’s season of 2017-18 stretched from mid-August 2017 to mid-April 2018 across three continents. Its showpiece should have been a hearty, hard-won recapturing of the Ashes, which drew record crowds, and stupendous run-making from captain Steve Smith. As the team celebrated success in Sydney, all seemed right in their world. But the sternest test was to come – one spectacularly failed at Newlands, costing Smith his job, and teammates David Warner and Cameron Bancroft their places.

Shadows on the Pitch chooses from Gideon Haigh’s daily despatches in a season of snakes and ladders, at the end of which Australia had lost its captain, vice-captain, opening batsman, coach, chief executive, most experienced director and senior lawyer, and was plunged into a bout of soul searching without precedent in the history of Australian cricket. It includes full coverage of the Ashes, incisive analysis of the ball tampering fiasco in South Africa, and hopes for the future of a troubled game.

Born in London, raised in Geelong, resident in Melbourne, Gideon Haigh has been a journalist since 1984, contributed to more than 100 newspapers and magazines, written thirty-two books and edited seven others. He has been a regular panellist on the ABC’s Offsiders since 2005, and reported the 2017-18 Ashes for The Australian and The Times. He is the author of An Eye on Cricket (Wilkinson Publishing, 2017).