In the 1860’s, the game of cricket was hugely popular and often played between neighbouring pastoral stations in Western Victoria.
One day at Pine Hills station, a tall aboriginal boy steps out from the phalaris grass and joins in a game of cricket. He shows them all how to play the game with skill, grace and flair. His name was ‘Unaarramin’ or Johhny Mullagh from Mullagh Station.
Touring England, playing for the Melbourne Cricket Club and for his local club, the Harrow Cricket Club, Johnny Mullagh’s achievements in batting and bowling are comparable to the best the game has ever seen.
Fifteen years before Test Cricket began, Johnny Mullagh became a true sporting legend, his feats making him one of Australia’s first international cricket stars.
A cricketing hero to a white audience, he was also a man caught between two worlds, facing racism and discrimination his entire life.
KNOCKABOUT CRICKET is a fictional account of how Johnny Mullagh may have come to play cricket, told from the perspective of a squatter’s son. This picture book is supported by historical facts about KNOCKABOUT CRICKET and Johnny’s life from historical documents and newspaper clippings.