With the 2015 Cricket World Cup in full swing, Tim Wigmore and Peter Miller's Second XI is already proving popular with cricket fans, in the UK and abroad.

 

As the world's second most popular sport, cricket is much richer and more diverse than many realise. Globally, passionate players make sacrifices to play for their country. 

 

These extraordinary tales of cricket in Afghanistan and Ireland, Kenya and the Netherlands resonate far beyond cricket, touching on war, sectarianism and even women's rights. 

 

Like Mohammad Nabi. He spent the first 16 years of his life as a refugee in Pakistan. He captained the Afghanistan side to the 2015 World Cup. 

 

The achievement came not just in spite of the Taliban but partly because of its support for cricket. 

 

In Ireland, the game has reawakened after a century of obscurity – but can they achieve their aim of Test cricket and end the player drain to England?

 

These are just two of the countries explored in Second XI, which tells the captivating tale of cricket’s journey in ten nations beyond the Test world: a vibrant world fighting for more recognition.

 

With a foreword from Gideon Haigh, Second XI shows how cricket resonates far beyond sport, touching on war, sectarianism and women’s rights. 

 

This book asks what it would take for America and China to embrace the game. It explains how Kenya reached the World Cup semi-finals and what happened next; why an Emirati faced Allan Donald armed only with a sunhat; and how cricket in the Netherlands almost collapsed after two bad days.

 

Ten countries are covered in the book are, but it is called Second XI because like all good Second XI's only ten players turned up!

  

Click here to read the first chapter of Second XI and for more information.

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