Entries Flood SAB Journo Awards

A record number of entries has been received for the 2006 SAB Sports Journalists of the Year Awards.

This is the 27th year in which the South African Breweries Ltd (SAB) has sponsored the awards, during which time they have established themselves as the most prestigious South African awards for sports journalists.

The SAB Sports Journalists of the Year Awards 2006, which takes place in Johannesburg on May 10, received more than 300 entries for the first time.

Sports journalism has grown in importance over the decades, and now attracts some of the finest writers, photographers and broadcasters in journalism.

The awards are attended by the who’s who in South African sports journalism as well as by influential sporting personalities and administrators. Guest speaker at this year’s ceremony is Bafana Bafana coach Carlos Parreira.

Judges said that the standard this year was particularly impressive. Comments Arthur Molisiwa who judged in the print, internet and radio and TV categories: “The standard was very high.

“There were more entries this year than ever before especially from print and the internet. It was exciting to see a lot of new journalists coming through and it bodes well for the future of South African sports journalism,” said Molisiwa.

“Universities have courses in journalism that deal with politics, but there is nothing that looks at sports journalism, and I feel something should be done to rectify the situation and help encourage new writers.”

Says Bronwyn Wilkinson: “The judges were highly impressed with the quality of the entries in both the written and photographic categories. The entries covered a variety of geographical areas, several types of print or internet media and an array of sports from fly-fishing to Formula One.”

It was particularly interesting and encouraging to note that the work entered for the newcomer of year sub-category was of a very high standard and many of these entries were right up there with the quality of the other categories,” said Wilkinson.

“Photographers perform a particular role in bringing sport alive for readers and this year the entries certainly did that. Most of the pictures were sheer class – certainly of a world standard – and the photographers are to be commended.”

Adds Guy Hawthorne: “The standard of this year’s entries was very pleasing, especially in the features, newcomers and photographic categories. It was encouraging to see so many newcomers entering after last year’s disappointing return in that category.

“We received a record number of photographic entries, every one of which was of an exceptionally high standard.”

There was also growth in the number of entries from outlying regions and community media, thanks to a countrywide road show that SAB embarked on before the call for entries was announced.

In the past the onus was on journalists nominating themselves – in recent years their colleagues and peers have also been able to submit nominations.

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