Chip Le Grand’s gripping account of the Essendon drug saga, The Straight Dope, has won the Walkley Book Award at last night’s Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism after also winning the inaugural William Hill Australian Sports Book of The Year.
Le Grand, a senior writer with The Australian, was praised for his meticulous account of the ASADA drug scandal that gripped Australian sport, crippling the Essendon AFL team. He beat out Erik Jensen’s Acute Misfortune: The Life and Death of Adam Cullen and Debi Marshall’s The Family Court Murders for the award.
The Inside Story of Sport’s Biggest Drug Scandal
The greatest drugs scandal in Australian sport goes well beyond who took what.
What happened at Essendon, what happened at Cronulla, is only part of the story. From the basement office of a suburban football club to the seedy corners of Peptide Alley to the polished corridors of Parliament House, The Straight Dope is an inside account of the politics, greed and personal feuds which fuelled an extraordinary saga.
Clubs and coaches determined to win, a sports scientist who doesn’t play by the rules, a generation of footballers held hostage by scandal and injected with who knows what, sport administrators hell bent on control, an anti-doping authority out of its depth, an unpopular government that just wants it to end… for two tumultuous seasons this was the biggest game in Australia.
About the Contributor
Andrew Cattanach is a regular contributor to The Booktopia Blog. He has been shortlisted for The Age Short Story Prize and was named a finalist for the 2015 Young Bookseller of the Year Award. He enjoys reading, writing and sleeping, though finds it difficult to do them all at once.
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