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Photographer makes sports journalism history

History was made at the SAB Sports Journalist of the Year Awards – held at the Wanderers Club in Johannesburg last night, Thursday, 10 May 2007, – when a photographer was selected as an overall winner for the first time in the awards’ 27-year history.
The Star's Etienne Rothbart receives the SAB Sports Journalist of the Year Award in the print and Internet category.
The Star's Etienne Rothbart receives the SAB Sports Journalist of the Year Award in the print and Internet category.
Veteran photographer Etienne Rothbart from The Star was named Sports Journalist of the Year in the print and Internet category. Honoured alongside him were Robert Marawa as Sports Journalist of the Year in the radio category for his show on Metro FM and SuperSport’s Alvin Naicker as Sports Journalist of the Year in the television category.

World record-breaking disabled athlete Oscar Pistorius was voted Most Media Friendly Sports Personality of the Year by sports journalists themselves, while Mr Boxing – renowned commentator and writer Bert Blewett – was inducted into the SAB Sports Writers Hall of Fame. Guest speaker was Bafana Bafana coach Carlos Parreira.

Record number of photographers


A record number of photographers entered the 2006 awards and the standard of the work submitted was exceptional, with Rothbart’s entries standing out in a strong field. The SABC dominated in the radio categories and SuperSport in the TV group.

Naicker won for his cutting-edge coverage of the Cricket Pro 20 Series, which brought a new dimension to the game of cricket, while Marawa was honoured for being “a true professional” and a natural on air.

Along with the coveted title, the three category winners each took home R15 000, while sub-category winners received a R3000 cash prize. This year the competition attracted a record number of entries, but according to the panel of judges, what was even more gratifying was the high standard of entries received for the awards.

Commented print and Internet judge Joe Latakgomo, “The panel of judges was highly impressed with the quality of entries for this year’s awards. Not only did we receive a record number of entries, but for the first time in many years, the entries were of such high quality that the judges often found it difficult to arrive at consensus on who the winner should be. Perhaps more pleasing than anything else was the number of entries received for the SAB Sports Photographer of the Year Award. The quality was superb, and the judges had to battle to separate the winners.”

Said Jan Snyman, TV and radio judge: “The quality of the TV productions submitted this year showed that there are no boundaries where innovation and creativity are concerned. It remains a joy to reward excellence. However, the panel felt that our national broadcaster – who had the TV rights for prime events like the Argus/Pick & Pay Cycle Tour, the A1 Grand Prix, Comrades Marathon and the Women’s World Cup of Golf – had a responsibility towards their producers and commentators to enter one or more of these showpieces. Unfortunately they didn’t.”

Full list of winners


The full list of winners at the 2006 SAB Sports Journalists of the Year Awards, including sub-category winners and merit awards, are:
  • Print and Internet Sports Journalist of the Year: Etienne Rothbart (The Star)
  • Radio Sports Journalist of the Year: Robert Marawa (Metro FM)
  • Television Sports Journalist of the Year: Alvin Naicker (SuperSport)

    PRINT AND INTERNET WINNERS

  • Sports Columnist of the Year: Nkareng Matshe (The Star)
  • Sports Feature Writer of the Year: Liryn de Jager (Rapport)
  • News Reporter of the Year: Dale Granger (Cape Argus)
  • Merit Award: Sports News Reporter of the Year: Marc Strydom (The Witness)
  • Sports Photographer of the Year: Etienne Rothbart (The Star)
  • Merit Award: Sports Photographer of the Year: Tertius Pickard (Gallo Pictures)
  • Newcomer of the Year: Carlos Amato (Sunday Times)

    RADIO WINNERS

  • Sports Commentator of the Year: Johan Rademan (RSG)
  • Sports Programme of the Year: Robert Marawa (Metro FM)
  • Sports Presenter of the Year: Robert Marawa (Metro FM)
  • Sports Insert of the Year: Ashraf Garda (SAfm)
  • Merit Award: Newcomer of the Year: Gerrie Scheepers (RSG)

    TELEVISION

  • Sports Programme Of The Year: John Clingen and Riana Kruger (SuperSport)
  • Best Live Outside Broadcast of the Year: Alvin Naicker (SuperSport)
  • Merit Award: Best Live Outside Broadcast of the Year: Jacques Van Schalkwyk (SuperSport)
  • Sports Commentator of the Year: Hugh Bladen (SuperSport)
  • Newcomer of the Year: Matthew Pearce (SuperSport)
  • Sports Insert of the Year: Gary Rathbone (SuperSport)
  • Most Media Friendly Sports Personality of the Year: athlete Oscar Pistorius

    SAB Sports Writers Hall of Fame inductee: Bert Blewett
The judges in the print and internet category were Paula Fray, JJ (Bokkie) Gerber, Guy Hawthorne, Gert Kotze, Joe Latakgomo (convener), Arthur Molisiwa and Bronwyn Wilkinson. Judges in the TV and radio categories were Robin Kempthorne, Zama Masondo, Arthur Molisiwa, Jan Snyman (convener), Tex Teixeira and Monde Twala.

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