Magnay, Pearce, Wheatcroft – top names join SJA

A national newspaper sports editor, the Olympics editor of another national daily, a BBC News correspondent, the cricket correspondent of a national Sunday title, and the editor of a combat sport magazine are among some of the new members to join the Sports Journalists’ Association so far in 2010.

The SJA’s membership is now well above 700, and our growing range of member benefits and events, including the SJA’s Sporting Question Time in just over a week’s time and our evening reception with London Mayor Boris Johnson in April – which will be open exclusively to fully paid-up SJA members – are clearly persuading ever more sports journalists, on nationals, in broadcasting, in the regions and in magazines, that membership represents excellent value.

That’s especially the case when you compare the ticket prices for SJA members at next month’s SJA British Sports Journalism Awards, where members may buy their dinner ticket for just £80 – £40 less than the price we are charging to non-members, and at least £50 less than comparable awards dinners staged by other organisations.

Among those signing up to take advantage of those SJA membership benefits is Jacquelin Magnay, the Telegraph‘s recently appointed Olympics editor, now in Vancouver for the Winter Games which get underway this weekend.

There, Magnay can compare notes with another new SJA member, PA Sport’s Martyn Ziegler, one of the runners in the Olympic torch relay. Joining that conversation could be the BBC’s sports news correspondent, James Pearce, who was also welcomed to the SJA fold this week.

Heading off in a different direction – east, with England’s cricketers to Dubai and Bangladesh – is Sunday Telegraph cricket writer Steve James, the former England and Glamorgan bowler.

They should all be back in Britain just in time for our annual British Sports Journalism Awards, being staged at The Brewery on March 8, and which will be attended by our many volunteer judges, including the Daily Star‘s sports editor, Howard Wheatcroft.

SJA members can cast their votes for the best in sports broadcasting by clicking here

The SJA also tries to recognise and work with our colleagues working on magazines and in the regional and local newspapers, too. So we are delighted that Louise Poynton, the group sports editor of East Surrey and Sussex News Media – with titles like the Surrey Mirror and Croydon Advertiser in her domain – also signing up. Also newly joined is Tris Dixon, the editor of Fighting Fit magazine, who doubles up as the web editor for Boxing News.

Others to have joined the SJA in 2010, are Amar Azam, who works with Collings Media; Peter Cziborra, with Action Images; Michael Facey, a reporter with online sports magazine NuffinLong; Raymond Field, a photographer with Professional Sport; prolific football and cricket writer Stuart Fuller; the Telegraph‘s Rod Gilmour; Gary James, a freelance motor sports writer;

Steve Lillis, a freelance writer; James Moy, a motor sport photographer; sports book author Marcus Stead; and Preston North End photographer Andrew Stunell; Nick Townsend, a former staffer at the Daily Mail; and Michael Zenanek a photographer.

Camerasport photographer Ian Cook; Ronald MacNeill, a motor sport photographer; and Paul Roberts, from Action Plus Images.

“We are delighted to welcome all new members to the SJA,” said honorary secretary Steven Downes, “and hope that they will all enjoy becoming involved with the Association and its events.”

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