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Bouch, through my eyes - a quick thought or 2

Luckily I was on holiday when my wife bought me the book by Mark Boucher: Bouch through my eyes.

I was half way through another book, so finished that and started with the book. I love cricket. I have tried to wean myself off the sport, like I have others, but when it comes to cricket and especially test cricket I cannot continually check the score, or try watch on TV. I love playing sport more than watching, but with cricket I am definitely better at watching then playing.

I did play club cricket for about a decade, but only after I turned 30. And action cricket does not really count. There is something special about the game. I was once told that cricket and fish are similar, a whole lot of people in the same vicinity involved in a similar quest. That is not it, there is something special about spending a day and half with people then laughing about a plucked catch or the bowler that took a fiver with all wickets caught in cow corner. It is hard to explain.

About the book, Reading the book you get a great sense of what Bouch was like as a child and youngster in cricket and then the affect it had on him when the selectors looked at averages rather than input. He talks about Jonty in the book, and Jonty was one of those two. He was the kind of person that had to be in the team. He provided energy and bounce and purpose, besides the fact that he was the best fielder ever. His energy was electric you got an idea on TV, but the intensity had to be experience live. Bouch was that kind of player. He was the person that you knew if he went out to bat you still had a chance, and only if he was out did you know there was trouble.

 The book is not just about playing cricket it about the management, the pranks, the effect of playing away for long times, the importance of being a team, and how important people management is in a team. Sports teams are like exposed business the rot shows quickly when the head is not well. It is laid out in the open. As a person that saw him come into the game (with the same doubts as most people) I saw the ups and downs, of a team that should have won more, knowing the players where not the problem. It was good to put facts behind those feelings.

Also covered in the book is his friendships and effect other people had in his life. There are also comment from these people in the book written by them, giving you an insight in to him through other people The last part written by Donné I found hit the nail on the head.

I would recommend the book to everyone that has any interest in cricket, and especially those that are stacking their early lives on the game. Boucher talks a lot to those people and I think if they pick up one book during their early years this is one they should.

He has been instrumental in SACA and now he is involved with Rhino conservation, I am sure he will be around cricket and will have his opinions; I look forward to hearing them. GREAT read.


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