Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40AN EXTRACT FROM: ED SMITH onsıde| ISSUE 38 37 ABOUT THE AUTHOR What was your inspiration for writing Luck? Three things. I broke my ankle in a freak accident playing at Lord’s which led to my retirement. I met my wife on a train. And a dodgy LBW decision ended my last innings for England. Those three things were the prompt for a three-year enquiry into various forms of luck. The origins of the idea were personal, but the book expanded in many surprising directions. How did your transition from playing cricket for fun, to playing as a young professional happen? It happened in one week. Though I was on Kent’s books, I hadn’t played a 2nd XI game – let alone a championship match – when I scored a hundred on my first class debut for Cambridge in 1996. Three months later I was opening the batting for Kent. I played half seasons during the summer holidays when I was at Cambridge, then full- time after graduating. I struggled with finding a happy balance in my early years as a full- time pro. At university, academic study and cricket blended naturally. I only rediscovered it in my mid- 20s, after a few years of narrowing too much towards cricket only. Is there one (or more) piece of advice you were given at school or on the pitch that has stuck with you? My father is a brilliant teacher and a fine writer. He didn’t advise me. We’ve always just chatted, throughout my life. I suppose my only “advice” is to seek out conversation that you find sustaining. Do you have any special routines or methods for writing your books? Walk, sleep, read, think. You have designed a new Masters course on the history of sport. Tell us a little about that. I want this London-based MA to become a new forum for top level thinking abut sport – drawing in academics, journalists, people from inside the sports insiders, as well as interested observers from beyond sport. Sport’s intellectual cutting edge. The guest lecturers include Mervyn King (Lord King of Lothbury), Sir Clive Woodward and (former England cricket captain) Mike Brearley. Sport and history are my two passions. This MA brings them together. In my last year at Cambridge, I was torn between becoming a professional cricketer and staying on in academia. I chose cricket. If this MA had existed back then, I could have played for Kent and continued doing history. The course is a one-year MA by research, part of the University of Buckingham’s London programmes. FIND OUT MORE: Ed Smith is an author, journalist and broadcaster. He has published four books, including What SportTells Us About Life (Penguin) and Luck – a fresh look at fortune (Bloomsbury). He is currently researching a history of sport in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, to be published by Allen Lane in 2018. Having graduated with a Double First in History from Peterhouse, Cambridge, he played professional cricket for 13 years, first for Kent and then for Middlesex, where he was club captain for two years, during which time the club won its first trophy for fifteen years. He played three Tests for England in 2003. Ed retired from cricket after breaking his ankle in 2008, taking up a position as a Times leader writer. He is now a columnist for The New Statesman, The Sunday Times and ESPNcricinfo, and commentates for BBC Test Match Special. He has made television and radio programmes for Radio 3, Radio 4 and BBC1. Below Ed answers some questions from ONSIDE editor, Rory Carroll, about his writing and his career.