Playing the Moldovans at Tennis

Playing the Moldovans at Tennis

by Tony Hawks

Paperback(Large Type)

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It doesn't take much - "£100 is usually sufficient" - to persuade Tony Hawks to take off on notoriously bizarre and hilarious adventures in response to a bet. And so it is, a pointless argument with a friend concludes in a bet - that Tony can't beat all eleven members of the Moldovan soccer team at tennis. And with the loser of the bet agreeing to strip naked on Balham High Road and sing the Moldovan national anthem, this one was just too good to resist.

The ensuing unpredictable and often hilarious adventure sees him being taken in by Moldovan gypsies and narrowly avoid kidnap in Transnistria. It sees him smuggle his way on to the Moldovan National Team coach in Coleraine and witness (almost) divine intervention in the Holy Land.

In this inspiring and exceptionally funny book, Tony Hawks has done it again, proving against all odds that there is no reason in the world why you can't do something a bit stupid and prove all of your doubters wrong. Or at least that was the idea....

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780753152140
Publisher: ISIS Large Print Books
Publication date: 04/28/2004
Series: Isis Softcover Series
Edition description: Large Type
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 6.16(w) x 9.26(h) x 1.13(d)

About the Author

Tony Hawks is a London-based writer and comedian who makes regular appearances on British TV and radio. Playing the Moldovans at Tennis is his second book, and if you have not already done so, he strongly urges you to buy his first book Round Ireland With a Fridge, a surreal adventure prompted by a £100 bet. Unlike most authors, Tony has singularly failed to settle down and live in the country with a wife and four children. This, however, is his ambition.

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Playing the Moldovans at Tennis 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Othemts on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
In a bet, Tony Hawks has to beat every single member of the Moldovan national football team in a game of tennis. In his quest to find and challenge the players he visits Moldova, Northern Ireland, and Israel. Like Round Ireland With A Fridge (although not quite as good) Hawks witty observations and ability to get himself into the most absurd situations makes this a laugh out loud book.
thornton37814 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Londoner Tony Hawks takes up a bet with his friend Arthur that he can defeat all 11 players of the Moldovan football team who had just completed a match in England at tennis. It's been awhile since Tony has played, and no one really knows if any of the football players is good at tennis. Hawks sets off to begin his quest and meets a number of obstacles along the way. The language, of course, is a barrier, but the players are quite spread out as far as their regular clubs are concerned. Some of their managers are not cooperative. In the end, Tony travels not only to Moldova but to Beirut and Israel in his quest to win the bet. I won't give away the outcome of the matches, but the book provides a nice change of pace from most travelogues and contains some quite humorous incidents along the way.
cbl_tn on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It started out as a bar bet. Tony Hawks, and his buddy, Arthur, were watching a football/soccer match between England and Moldova. Somehow, by the end of the game, Hawks had bet that he could beat all 11 of the Moldovan football players at tennis.The rest of the book is the story of Hawks' quest to win the bet. He had lots of obstacles to overcome, starting with getting a visa to visit Moldova. Since Moldova issues visas only to people who have been invited by a citizen, Hawks had to find a citizen to extend an invitation to him. He would cross one hurdle only to find another one in his path. He spent most of his time in Moldova trying to make contact with team officials and/or the players themselves. At the time of his visit, Moldova had been an independent nation for only half a dozen years, and there were deficiencies in its infrastructure. No task, even a phone call, was simple. The Moldovan acquaintances he accumulated during his visit were pessimistic that he would succeed in his quest, yet they went to great lengths to help him.This would have been a dull book if it had been nothing more than a description of 11 tennis matches. However, much of the book is filled with Hawks' experiences with his translator and his host family. He spent most of his time in Moldova with at least one of these five people, and it's through their conversations and shared experiences that he (and we) glimpse what life is like for the average Moldovan. Hawks' skills as a comedian are well suited for observing a different culture. Hawks finds humor in situations, but not at the expense of others.I don't have any more desire to visit Moldova after reading this book than I did before I read it, but I do have an appreciation for the Moldovan people, and I hope that their economic condition has improved in the decade since Hawks' visit.
MontglaneChess on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Comedian Tony Hawks does it again as another bet lands him in Moldova, this time prepared to beat all eleven soccer players from the national team at tennis. Set against a little seen background of post-Soviet Moldova, Hawks wanders the grim streets in search of his footballers while avoiding open manholes. Hawks trivial trip is laid out in linear fashion as he goes from Moldova, to Russia, and Israel in order to play his list of footballers. The tennis matches start counting down and Tony's knowledge of Eastern Europe grows as he edges toward the final conclusion of his travels--where someone will end up stark-naked singing the Moldovan national anthem! Fraught with language barriers, frustrating post-Cold War bureaucracy, and deception, this might be Tony Hawks most elaborate bet yet. Hawks style of writing is a blend of bloke-ish humor and understated awareness of his cultural surroundings. Features bonus pictures from his travels. A slightly irreverent option to the more traditional, staid travelogue. An engaging option for high school or public libraries.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Anyone familiar with Tony Hawks would expect this book to be really entertaining, and it is. 'Some have even said funnier than Bill Bryson, and I have to agree.' As if that isn't enough, it's also one of those books where the main character's horizons are broadened-- and of course, so are ours.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had a friend that lived in the Republic of Moldova, and he suggested that I purchase the book Playing the Moldovans at Tennis. I must admit, I was hesitant at first, but after the first page you're already crying from the insanely witty humor this author possesses. Who knew a simple bet could change one man's life, and bring two completely different cultures in unison for a ride of laughter, tears, and fulfillment. Tony Hawk's Playing the Moldovans at Tennis is a must read!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is Tony Hawks best work! I dont want to give anything away, but it is worth the read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I picked up a paperback copy of this in London and I am so i happy I did. I lived in Moldova for over two years and he described everything I have been trying to tell my friends and family since returning. I laughed at every page.