[…]

So apparently it\x92s okay to hit your wife, as long as you\x92re a lovable rogue with it. And, let\x92s face it, if you write a book about it afterwards saying how terribly remorseful you are, we\x92ll probably even shower you with plaudits.

G8, the wife-beater-formerly-known-as-Gazza (and now variously known as \x91brave\x92 and/or \x91troubled\x92) has won the prize for Sports Book of the Year at the British Book Awards. He broke down in tears when accepting the reward last night.

The book, which was ghost written by football writer Hunter Davies, is apparently heavy on the self-flagellation over his battle-with-drink-and-drugs, his erratic on and off pitch antics and his traumatic childhood, but is described by one reviewer as "shamefully" glossing over his beating of his then-wife, Sheryl.