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Life and lessons from the world of Australian Rules Football as told by an icon of the sport, Leigh Matthews.
Four-time Premiership player, voted the player of the 20th Century and four time Premiership coach Leigh Matthews offers rare insights into the life and learning experiences that have shaped him along his successful and at times turbulent journey. Autobiographical in style, Accept the Challenge takes the reader back to Leigh's early childhood through to his current position as an elder statesman of the game. An honest self-appraisal, Leigh ponders the influences and experiences that shaped his character, his decisions, and ultimately his career. Leigh is extremely open as the book explores early childhood, the fortune of moving to Hawthorn, and the commencement of the shaping of his own philosophy and beliefs by legendary coaches John Kennedy, David Parkin, and Allan Jeans. It identifies with the pressures of coaching Collingwood and the relief that success delivers. The task of building a champion team in the Brisbane Lions and the different personalities that contributed to the challenge but also to the successful formula that dominated the sport at the turn of the century. Lessons in team dynamics, man management, keys to success, goal setting, and managing a crisis are interspersed with revealing anecdotes and exclusive content from the biggest name in the game during the sports' most successful era.
About the Author
With over 40 years of involvement at the elite level, Matthews is one of the key features of Channel Seven and 3AW's AFL coverage and in 2010 was awarded the Australian Football Media Association's award for Most Outstanding Special Commentator u Televisiono. Originally from Chelsea, Matthews was recruited by Hawthorn, playing 332 games and amassing a list of accolades that rank him at the head of the game's greats. Part of four Premierships with the Hawks and an eight-time Best and Fairest, Matthews won the VFL's leading goalkicker and MVP award, was a three-time All-Australian and a Victorian representative on 14 occasions. Upon retiring in 1985, Matthews moved into coaching as an Assistant with Collingwood. Elevated to the senior role before the end of 1986, Matthews would go on to coach the Magpies for nine years, the third-longest tenure in club history. The highlight of his time at the helm was the club's drought-breaking Premiership in 1990, ending a 32-year wait for success at Victoria Park. Matthews spent the next three years in the media, where his experience and knowledge of the game was integral to Seven's AFL coverage. His work in radio and print was also highly respected. Lured back to coaching in 1999, Matthews accepted the main role at the Brisbane Lions. Again, success quickly followed, with the Lions climbing from last in 1998 to a Preliminary Final in his first in charge. The Lions made the early part of the 21st century their own under Matthews, becoming the first side since Melbourne in the 1950s to win three consecutive titles, triumphing in 2001-2-3. The eighth longest serving coach in AFL history, Matthews resigned from the Lions at the end of 2008. He was immediately back in the media fold, impressing in a special comments role with Seven during its 2008 Finals broadcast.
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book came within days of ordering and follow up by Booktopia was very efficient.
As we see Leigh Matthews on TV and radio is how he presents himself in the book. He states very matter of factly that he is an AFL legend and the best player of the 20th century without any bragging or bravado. He also matter of factly documents the mistakes he made as both a player and a coach. He strikes me as someone who occasionally stews (and may still stew) over some of his decisions, but for the most part, he learns from his mistakes and moves on. He was to me as the reader a much better coach at Brisbane than Collingwood (he acknowledges this indirectly) which reflects that he takes his learnings and does better next time. This is a book that would benefit both prospective players and coaches; it is an educational autobiography for aspiring sportsmen and coaches. Matthews is as impressive a sportsman as this country has produced and his autobiography is a fitting self assessment of his life to this point.
Bought a couple of copies for mates that love their footy.
Is a great read with lots of insite into AFL and clubs
Number Of Pages: 160
Published: 1st November 2013
Publisher: Random House Australia
Dimensions (cm): 19.8 x 12.8 x 4.8
Weight (kg): 0.79