The Game: A Journey Into the Heart of Sport

16.95

Tadhg Coakley

Novelist, Sportswriter and All-Ireland minor hurling winner Tadhg Coakley ruminates on the importance of sport in his life. He reflects on the joys of sport, as player and fan, and sport’s pervasive influence, good and bad, on humanity.

June 2022

Description

Why is sport so important to us?
Is it because we make it so important to us?
Something so silly and worthless, but at the same time so vital.
What’s that all about?

The Game is a multifaceted reflection on sport. It is part memoir, outlining Tadhg Coakley’s time as a player and fan, and how sport has shaped his life. But it also tackles sport on a universal scale – the good and the bad – and its immeasurable influence on our world.

For fans, sport can be all-consuming. Indeed, we are consuming sport in ever greater gulpfuls, often blindly. It has a dark side; it is rife with corruption, sexism, homophobia, nationalism and a raft of toxic masculine behaviour, and Coakley interrogates his own attitudes on each of these fronts.

On the other hand, sport builds all manner of valuable connections and communities, and in sport – as in art – people can forge their own identities with grace, imagination and the possibility of what may be. This duality is one of the most fascinating aspects of sport.

Written with warmth, openness and keen insight, The Game is an entertaining and thought-provoking meditation on the uniquely intense highs and lows of loving sport in today’s world.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Preface
Part 1
The Game
Ekstasis
Part 2
Miracles
Kisses
Part 3
Initiations, Longing to Belong
Memories – Peculiar Veracities
The Collective
Giving Voice to my Own Astonishment
Part 4
Dark Passions
My Sports Hero Riku Riski and Some Questions
Am I Sexist?
Losing – The Anonymous Subsoil
Part 5
Possession
A Place Beyond Words
Part 6
Hurt 1: Masculinity
Hurt 2: Fallibility
My Coronavirus Comeback
Part 7
Returning Home to Innocence

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Tadhg Coakley is from Cork. His debut novel, The First Sunday in September (2018), was shortlisted for the Mercier Press Fiction prize. His second, Whatever It Takes, was chosen as the 2020 Cork, One City One Book. Tadhg’s short stories, articles and essays have been published in The Stinging Fly, Winter Papers, and The Irish Times, and he writes about sport for the Irish Examiner.

PRAISE FOR THE GAME
Any of us who write about sport will have thought about writing this kind of book at some point. An attempt to understand sport, to explain it (and us), to stake its outer boundaries in our own peculiar way. Thankfully for all concerned, Tadhg Coakley has saved the world the bother of having to plough through all that. The Game is a thoughtful, artful gem.
Malachy Clerkin

A heartfelt exploration of sport and so much more. A many-chambered book that is empathetic and engaging.
Sinéad Gleeson

This is a towering work. … The essays ‘Miracles’ and ‘Kisses’ are two of the most beautiful, poignant and heartfelt pieces of writing I’ve ever read.
Tadhg is clear-eyed, intelligent, and unrelentingly honest about the darkness that pervades the business of sport and its capacity to arouse our basest instincts … He asks the hardest of questions and delivers unflinchingly honest answers. This is no paean … it is a brilliantly forensic and startlingly objective account of the ways that sport at once transcends, debases and delineates our humanity.
Tadhg admits to feeling like an outsider but he is firmly and undeniably in the inner circle of the great sportswriters. And he is clearly, though he’d probably deny it, the truest of sportsmen.
Donal Ryan

Additional information

Weight 0.35 kg
Imprint

Publication Date

Author

Paperback ISBN

9781785372971

Page Extent

264pp

Format