Now in its 32nd year, the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award is the world’s longest established and most valuable literary sports-writing prize.

Sports Book of the Year 2020 Calendar

11th February: Entries open.

28th August: Deadline for final entries.

29th September: Sports Book of the Year Longlist announced.

27th October: Sports Book of the Year Shortlist announced.

3rd December: Award ceremony and winner announced.

The William Hill Sports Book of the Year award is dedicated to rewarding excellence in sports writing and was first awarded in 1989. This year, 2020, the prize for winning the award will be £30,000.

When we start the process of reading for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year, we sometimes only have five or six books entered. It is like the early stages of the racing season, when every horse just might be a Derby winner, according to its owner, trainer and jockey, but as each one appears on a racecourse it has to be judged against the other contenders and either eliminated from, or promoted up, the list of potential champions.

No matter which way it goes, our ultimate winner will always be an over-achieving, richly deserving sporting champion.

Prizes

The William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award is the world’s longest established and most valuable literary sports-writing prize. The winning author will receive £30,000 and a trophy. Shortlisted authors receive £3,000 cash and a leather-bound copy of their book.

 

Previous winners of the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award

YearTitleAuthor(s) Sport
2019The Great Romantic: Cricket and the Golden Age of Neville CardusDuncan HamiltonCricket
2018A Boy in the WaterTom GregoryLong-Distance Swimming
2018The Lost Soul of Eamonn MageePaul D. GibsonBoxing
2017Tom Simpson: Bird on the WireAndy McGrathCycling
2016Barbarian Days: A Surfing LifeWilliam FinneganSurfing
2015The Game of Our Lives: The Meaning and Making of English FootballDavid GoldblattFootball
2014Night Games: Sex, Power and a Journey into the Dark Heart of SportAnna KrienAustralian Rules Football
2013Doped: The Real Life Story of the 1960s Racehorse Doping GangJamie ReidHorse Racing
2012The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping, Cover-ups, and Winning at All CostsTyler Hamilton & Daniel CoyleCycling
2011A Life Too Short: The Tragedy of Robert EnkeRonald RengFootball
2010Beware of the Dog: Rugby's Hard Man Reveals AllBrian MooreRugby
2009Harold LarwoodDuncan HamiltonCricket
2008Coming Back to Me: The Autobiography of Marcus TrescothickMarcus Trescothick & Peter HayterCricket
2007Provided You Don't Kiss Me: 20 Years with Brian CloughDuncan HamiltonFootball
2006Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack JohnsonGeoffrey WardBoxing
2005My Father & Other Working Class Football HeroesGary ImlachFootball
2004Basil D'Oliveira: Cricket and Conspiracy: the Untold StoryPeter OborneCricket
2003Broken Dreams: Vanity, Greed and the Souring of British FootballTom BowerFootball
2002In Black and White: The Untold Story of Joe Louis and Jesse OwensDonald McRaeAthletics, Boxing
2001Seabiscuit: The True Story of Three Men and a RacehourseLaura HillenbrandHorse Racing
2000It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to LifeLance Armstrong & Sally JenkinsCycling
1999A Social History of English CricketDerek BirleyCricket
1998Angry White Pyjamas: An Oxford Poet Trains with the Tokyo Riot PoliceRobert TwiggerAikido
1997A Lot of Hard Yakka: Cricketing Life on the County CircuitSimon HughesCricket
1996Dark Trade: Lost in BoxingDonald McRaeBoxing
1995A Good Walk Spoiled: Days and Nights on the PGA TourJohn FeinsteinGolf
1994Football Against the EnemySimon KuperFootball
1993Endless Winter: The Inside Story of the Rugby RevolutionStephen JonesRugby
1992Fever Pitch: A Fan's LifeNick HornbyFootball
1991Muhammad Ali: His Life and TimesThomas HauserBoxing
1990Rough Ride: An Insight into Pro CyclingPaul KimmageCycling
1989True Blue: The Oxford Boat Race MutinyDan Topolski & Patrick RobinsonRowing