Born to Bowl The Life and Times of Don Shepherd by Douglas Miller with a foreword by Tony Lewis. (Fairfield Books, Bath, 2004. £ 15.00). While this book will appeal primarily to followers of Glamorgan cricket, there is much of general interest relevant to Gower. Don Shepherd was born in 1927 in Porteynon (he insists it is spelt as a single word), which at that time could boast its own cricket team. When he was eight years old his family moved to Parkmill, taking over the shop that still bears their name. A bygone age is evoked in describing what was involved in the daily journey to and from Gowerton County School for Boys (to which he won a scholarship), the wartime sharing of school build- ings, and delivery of newspapers to American servicemen on the RAF air- field at Fairwood. He had played virtually no organised cricket when his bowling potential was spotted during his National Service: a year's apprenticeship with MCC at Lord's led to his joining Glamorgan, initially as a fast bowler. After the 1955 season he changed to bowling off-spinners, which over twenty- three seasons (in itself a testimony to his fitness) made him Glamorgan's leading wicket-taker. This reviewer recalls that on achieving his 2,000th wicket at Cardiff in 1969 the year Glamorgan won the county champ- ionship for the second time a glass of champagne was brought out to him to celebrate the landmark. After retiring from first-class cricket in 1972 he worked for eighteen years at the family stores in Parkmill, before his cricket expertise was channelled into commentating with Radio Wales. Douglas Miller perceptively explores the mystery of Don Shepherd's non-selection for England Richie Benaud said: "Had he been an Austral- ian he would have played for his country many, many times". There are pithy comparisons with modern cricket, and sympathetic pen pictures of contemporaries; this book contains no unflattering revelations about fellow players or administrators perhaps because as the late John Arlott said "the game is full of his friends". His county colleague, England all- rounder Peter Walker, said: "I've tried to think of something negative about him, but I really can't. He is a top, top human being!" Born to Bowl is a fitting tribute to the Gower man who became Wales' outstanding bowler. G.C.G.