SJA Awards: What they had to say

The plaudits have been coming in all week following Monday’s hugely successful 2006 SJA Sports Journalism Awards, sponsored by UK Sport and staged at The Brewery in London, which concluded with all the winners joining SJA President Michael Parkinson for a picture of the winning team

Here are a few of the (printable) comments:

“A great night and I am not just saying that because I was lucky enough to avoid having my lights punched out by Charlie. Well done” – Alan Hubbard, Independent on Sunday, and SJA Sports Diarist of the Year, seen here receiving his prize from the ECB’s David Morgan

“Many congratulations on a first-class evening. Great fun all round, well presented and most enjoyable” – Jolyon Armstrong, Jolyon Armstrong Network

Richard Bath, sports editor, Scotland on Sunday:

“It was very enjoyable, bigger in scope than I’d imagined and seemed to have all the big hitters there. My main regret was that I turned up as the gong went for dinner and wish I’d turned up earlier because eveyone seemed to disappear immediately afterwards and there were lots of people I would have enjoyed catching up with”

“Some people seemed to find the number of corporate tables a bit imposing. One old timer grasped me warmly by hand and said: ‘At last a working journalist’.

“I know he is not entirely accurate on the description of me, but his feelings about outsiders were genuine. I think that the only way to redress this is to get more journalists to take a table” – Jon Ryan, sports editor, the Sunday Telegraph

“Thanks to all at the SJA for a hugely enjoyable evening. Okay, I didn’t win anything but I’ll be back next year hopefully, if only to get drunk. Kate Stewart, from the Prostate Cancer Charity, despite being heavily pregnant, enjoyed herself as did my wife and sons, one of whom said it was good to go to a dinner that was efficiently run but that was not stuffy. The money raised is terrific and I know that Kate and the PCC generally will be thrilled” – shortlisted Specialist Correspondent Bill Elliott

“Last night was a good bash” – cartoonist Kevin Macey

“You know what they say about sports awards. They are like piles. Sooner or later every arsehole has one. Bigger arseholes have two, I suppose” – Doug Gillon, double award-winning sportswriter from The Herald, Glasgow, pictured left, receiving his Regional Writer’s award from Mihir Bose, the BBC’s sports editor

“I was very impressed by the speed of the event. Great tempo, so congrats to John Inverdale and whoever subbed the shortlist material. The fact the gig was effectively over by 10pm stopped any boozed-up boorish behaviour. That came later.

“My meal was okay. I did have to fight to keep the wine we’d bought as they tried to clear the tables. I am told that by 1 am some people felt they were being manhandled off the premises” – David Walker, Sunday Mirror sports editor

Kate Stewart, head of media and public affairs at the Prostate Cancer Charity:

“I had a lovely time and was very well looked after by my table companions and thought the event was a huge success – we are all very grateful to you for choosing us as your chosen charity and it was excellent to reach so many men in one night!”

Post your comments on the SJA Sports Journalism Awards in the blog’s Comment box below

The final picture here below shows the SJA Sports Photographer of the Year, Stu Forster, right, and SJA Sports Writer of the Year, Martin Samuel, receiving their awards from SJA President Michael Parkinson

For our report on the Awards, click here

To view some of the winning photographs, click here

And see more pictures from the event by clicking here