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November 26 , 2010

Jack Doyle

The Gorgeous Gael


'As boxing books go, this is a masterpiece' - Barry McGuigan. Jack Doyle (1913-1978) was a 6ft 5in Irishman with a giant appetite for life. In 1933 he drew 90,000 to London's White City to see him fight and was making £600 a week on stage as a singer. He was nineteen. By the age of thirty he had earned and squandered a £250,000 fortune (worth millions today). His motto was, ‘A generous man never went to hell,' and he lived his life like a hellraiser. In his heyday as a heavyweight boxer, singer and playboy, his celebrity rivalled that of the Prince of Wales, and he and his wife - the beautiful Mexican film star and singer Movita, who later married Marlon Brando, - were as popular in the thirties and forties as Olivier and Leigh or Burton and Taylor. This remarkable biography rescues a glittering period of social and boxing history from obscurity and restores Jack and Movita to their rightful place in the showbiz and sporting pantheon. Jack's ring presence and personality reached back to the days of the Regency Buck. His friendships with the Royal family, his fist-fight with Clark Gable, his life as a film star and gigolo, his throwing of a fight by knocking himself out, and his extraordinary post-war career as an all-in wrestler, are the stuff of legend confirmed here by seven years' exhaustive research, during which Taub tracked down and interviewed the leading players in Jack's life. Runner-up for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award 1990
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