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The Love of the Game: Parenthood, Sport and Me

by Mark Chapman


BBC sports presenter Mark Chapman is no longer in his physical prime.

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  • Pages:
  • 272
  • Date of publication:
  • 3rd November 2016
  • Publisher:
  • Weidenfeld & Nicolson
  • ISBN:
  • 978-1409163282

There is an argument to suggest he has never been in his physical prime. Now in his forties, he is facing a world of knee replacements and ever-expanding waistlines, whilst his children are thriving.

There is huge pride that they are doing so well, mixed with a fair amount of jealousy that actually they are better at a wide range of sport than he ever was. He is passionate about sport and it has played a huge part in his life. His parents encouraged him from a very early age and he wants to pass the baton on to his son and daughters. Although there is every chance he might drop it and have a massive strop instead. He is also very aware of the huge changes in sport today compared to when he was growing up; and he is determined that his own attitude to his son and daughters’ sport – be it football, netball, cricket or gymnastics – will be exactly the same. And he wants to shine a light on grass roots sports – the incredible and largely unsung contribution that volunteers make in the sporting commnity, without whom – for example – no professional footballer would be in the game today.

Funny, touching, passionate about sport and parenthood, Mark Chapman paints sport as a touchstone for everything important: growing up, becoming a parent, enjoying family time, getting old, learning how to win (and how to lose gracefully), the legacy we all hope to leave our children; in short, life and all that goes into it.