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globalrugbyleague - Wed, 03 Oct 2007 22:40:00 GMT
As a believer that footballers were creatures of habit Jack Gibson helped John Peard develop one which would single handedly define his career.

Believing the claim that there was no defence for the ‘up-and-under’ kicking game, Peard quickly perfected the move and was eventually christened with the nickname “Bomber.”

In 2002 at age 57, John suffered a massive stroke from which doctors didn’t expect him to survive. The experts were wrong again and the comical larrikin lived to tell his story.

Hence why the title of this new book is appropriately called “Fine thanks mate: John Bomber Peard on League, Life and Second Chances.”

An emotive biography with important theme permeating right throughout this special story.

That the best thing to come out of playing footy in the long-run aren’t the premierships or the money but the friendships.

“The support of old fellow footballers played a huge role in helping me survive my stroke. The boys (and there were many) and nothing was too much trouble.”

Thanks to the help of mates like Arthur Beetson, John Quayle and ex-coach Jack Gibson to name a few and through the power of humour and self-determination, Peard has slowly put his life back to together.

Since his life-changing stroke, he’s returned to the surf once albeit with some assistance and has even made it back onto the speaking circuit which to his credit he does for free minus transport and accommodation costs.

Today his goals are to walk without his stick, be able to jog slowly and to win the next men of league 200-metre-foot race. This memoir isn’t all bleak though.

The comical anecdotes from his post-football career are endless yet priceless though not all are original which the subject freely admits.

His one-liners at Arthur Beetson’s expense are definite knee slappers and had they not been teammates could’ve made for some perfect sledging.

“Arthur was going to have a facelift but the crane broke.”

There are some great philosophical life lessons to learn from John ‘Bomber’ Beard and only a fool would ignore them.

An inspirational read and one which reminds us once again that what doesn’t kill you can only makes you stronger.

FINE THANKS MATE on Football, Life and Second Chances is published by ABC Books and is now available for RRP $29.95 paperback in all good leading bookshops nationwide. - Read More, Here