Engage : The Fall & Rise of Matt Hampson by Paul Kimmage has won this year’s williamhill.com Irish Sports Book of the Year award. Engage won the award ahead of runners-up Life, Death and Hurling by Michael Duignan and One Hell of a Ride by Paul Carberry. Irish sports writer Kimmage won the overall williamhill.com international award in 1990 for A Rough Ride: behind the wheel with a pro cyclist. The winning book focuses on the life of former English rugby international Matt Hampson who was paralysed from the neck down after a scrum collapsed during an England U-21 training session in 2005. The book details Hampson’s promising career through his rehabilitation and into his new life raising money and helping spinal injury victims along with his hope to coach England one day. Tony Kenny, Head of International PR for William Hill said; " Not only is Paul an excellent writer and story teller, he also connected perfectly with a story of true human triumph in the book. Matt Hampson’s story is an inspiration to everyone who has read it and without Paul’s unique skill this story may not have touched as many people as it will over the coming months and years." Runner-up Life, Death and Hurling by Michael Duignan looks at Duignan’s life as an Offaly hurler where he won two All-Ireland medals along with his tragic struggles off the field. The other runner-up was Paul Carberry’s One Hell of a Ride, which recounts his Grand National victory and his life as a two time Champion jockey along with his battle with alcohol and his countless injuries and broken bones.
The other shortlisted titles were:
Without a Shadow of a Doubt by Joe Kernan
A.P. McCoy by Tony McCoy
Inside the Peloton by Nicolas Roche