Rahul Dravid: Challenger of the Day
The legend talks about sports books that he loves, even as RCB get ready to fight for a Champions League spot against DC in Mumbai today.
How important is it for young cricketers to have lateral interests other than the game?
Each one of us is different. I wouldn't say it is a necessity or a must. I can only speak my from my experience and not generalize that there is a certain way to do things. Lateral interests could be different, just that mine happens to be reading. I guess it's important to have some interest other than the game because more than anything else, it's a way to relax.
You're famed for being a voracious reader. When did it all begin?
Well, I've always been reading, right from school. It started with the usual Hardy Boys, Enid Blyton sort of thing. I always enjoyed reading, but it was really in college, when I had a group of close friends who read a lot, that I picked up much more. They introduced me to a lot of non-fiction stuff from various authors.
Which sports books do you love and why?
As far as sports books are concerned, I really enjoy reading David Halberstam. Of course, he wrote on different subjects but the book that I love is called amateurs. Based in the U.S. , it's about the sport of rowing and tracks the quest of five to six contenders for a spot in the Olympics.
Another book that I like is Moneyball by Michael Lewis, which looks at the alternative strategies that a mid-revenue baseball team uses to stay competitive. These are essentially the couple of sports books that are on top of the list?
What about books on cricket?
I read Sunny Days as a young kid. It was a book on India and on Gavaskar, and being at an impressionable age, it had an impact on me no doubt.
Rohit Brijnath talks about how literature on sports like boxing and poker is far more evolved. Have you read anything on those subects?
Nothing on poker really. But I guess what you're talking about is because of the fact that the America and U.K. are more of a market for sports books and obviously, you find good writers who can write about sports. Andre Agassi's latest book, Open, for instance, is an absolute beauty.