Clare Balding joins a stellar group of judges for the inaugural Sports Writing Award, including former Olympic Champion Christine Ohuruogu and England cricket legend Darren Gough.

For the first time, The Telegraph Sports Book Awards to take place at the Kia Oval’s on 20th September 2021.

Arsene Wenger’s bestseller heads The Telegraph Sports Book Awards shortlist for 2021.

Shortlist includes Joe Wicks, Jamie Redknapp, Harry Pearson, Eddie Hearn, Andy Cole, David Walsh, Tyson Fury, Andy Robertson, Ruqsana Begum, Tom Fordyce, Gianluca Vialli, Jeff Stelling, Geraint Thomas, Chloe Madeley, Luka Modric, Nicklas Bendtner, Marco Van Basten, Joe Marler, Rob Kearney, Catherine Spencer, James Haskell, Chris Sutton, Alan Brazil and many more. 



The Telegraph Sports Book Awards 2021 shortlist is as follows:

The Clays Best Sports Writing Award

Frankel- Simon Cooper(HarperCollins)

The Biggest Bluff - Maria Konnikova (HarperCollins)

The Moth and the Mountain - Ed Caesar (Viking)

The Russian Affair - David Walsh (Simon and Schuster)

The Breath of Sadness - Ian Ridley (Floodlit Dreams)

The Farther Corner - Harry Pearson (Simon and Schuster)~

Autobiography of the Year

Me, Family and the Making of a Footballer - Jamie Redknapp (Headline)

Fast Forward - Andrew Cole (Hodder & Stoughton)

Out of the Darkness - Matt Piper (Pitch Publishing)

Robbo: Now You're Gonna Believe Us - Andy Robertson (Reach Sport)

Born Fighter - Ruqsana Begum (Simon and Schuster)

Mud, Maul, Mascara - Catherine Spencer (Unbound)

Children’s Book of the Year, in association with National Literacy Trust

My Greatest Football Team Ever - Tom Fordyce and Kieran Carroll (Hachette Children's Group)

Chasing a Rugby Dream - James Hook and David Brayley (Polaris)

Johnny Ball: Accidental Football Genius - Matt Oldfield and Tim Wesson (Walker Books)

Karate Kids - Holly Sterling (Walker Books)

Football Superstars: Rashford Rules - Simon Mugford and Dan Green (Welbeck)

Macbeth United- Michael Rosen and Tony Ross (Scholastic)

OWN GOAL! (Football Mad #1) - Paul Stewart and Michael Broad (Barrington Stoke)

Roy of the Rovers: Rocky - Tom Palmer and Dan Cornwell (Rebellion Publishing)

The Heartaches Cricket Book of the Year

The Commonwealth of Cricket - Ramachandra Guha (HarperCollins)

Comeback Summer - Geoff Lemon (Hardie Grant)

One Long and Beautiful Summer - Duncan Hamilton (Riverrun)

Barbed Wire and Cucumber Sandwiches - Dr Colin Shindler (Pitch Publishing)

That Will be England Gone - Michael Henderson (Constable)

Unforgiven, The Missionaries or Mercenaries? - Ashley Gray (Pitch Publishing)

Bob Willis: A Cricketer and a Gentleman- Bob Willis, Mike Dickson (Hodder & Stoughton)

VAARU Cycling Book of the Year

Colombia Es Pasión - Matt Rendell (Weidenfeld & Nicolson)

Dead Man to Iron Man - Paul Smith (Pitch Publishing)

Signs of Life: To the Ends of the Earth with a Doctor - Stephen Fabes (Pursuit, Profile Books)

Mountains According to G - Geraint Thomas (Quercus)

Tour de France Champions: An A-Z - Giles Belbin (The History Press)

CLOC Football Book of the Year, in association with the Football Writers’ Association

Sacré Bleu: Zidane to Mbappé – A football journey -Matthew Spiro (Biteback Publishing)

Champagne Football - Mark Tighe & Paul Rowan (Sandycove, Penguin)

The Quality of Madness - Tim Ric (Quercus)

Soccer Diplomacy - Heather L. Ditcher (UKP)

How to Run a Football Club - Jim Keoghan (Pitch Publishing)

St. Pauli: Another Football is Possible - Natxo Parra, Carles Vina (Pluto Press)

Illustrated Book of the Year

British Football’s Greatest Grounds - Mike Bayly (Pitch Publishing)

Skate Like A Girl - Carolina Amell (Prestel)

This is Cricket - Daniel Melamud (Rizzoli)

We Are Home - Mike Dunn & AFC Wimbledon (Vision Sports Publishing)

175 Years of Surrey CCC, Surrey CCC (Vision Sports Publishing)

Pinsent Masons International Autobiography of the Year

Luka Modri?: My Autobiography - Luka Modri? (Bloomsbury Publishing)

True Colours - Barry Geraghty (Headline)

Both Sides - Nicklas Bendtner; Rune Skyum-Nielsen (Octopus)

Basta - My Life, My Truth - Marco van Basten (Octopus)

My Life in Red and White - Arsene Wenger (Weidenfeld & Nicolson)

No Hiding - Rob Kearney (Reach Sport)

Arbuthnot Latham Rugby Book of the Year, in association with The Rugby Writers’ Club

Loose Head - Joe Marler (Ebury)

What A Flanker - James Haskell (HarperCollins)

Our Blood Is Green - Gavin Rich (Polaris)

Exe Men - Robert Kitson (Polaris)         

The Hurt - Dylan Hartley (Viking)

No Hiding - Rob Kearney (Reach Sport)

Sports Entertainment Book of the Year

Never Stop Dreaming - Stuart Pearce, Oliver Holt (Hodder & Stoughton)

You're Better Than That- Chris Sutton (Monoray, Octopus)

Only Here For A Visi - Alan Brazil (Bantam Press, Transworld Books)

Lights Out, Full Throttle - Damon Hill and Johnny Herbert (Pan Macmillan)

26.2 Miles to Happiness - Paul Tonkinson (Bloomsbury Publishing)

I've Got Mail - Jeff Stelling (Headline)

Sports Health & Fitness Book of the Year

Relentless: 12 Rounds to Success - Eddie Hearn (Hodder & Stoughton)

The Whitlock Workout - Max Whitlock (Headline)

Goals: Inspirational Stories to Help Tackle Life's Challenges - Gianluca Vialli and Gabriele Marcotti (Headline)

30 Day Kick Start Plan - Joe Wicks (Bluebird, Pan Macmillan)

The Furious Method - Tyson Fury (Century, Cornerstone)

Eating for Results - Chloe Madeley (Bantam Press, Transworld Books)


For more information about The Telegraph Sports Book Awards 2021, visit

Back to news