2005 SJA British Sports Journalism Awards

Samuel and Hewitt take top honours in sports journalism

By Ian Cole

MARTIN SAMUEL of The Times and Mike Hewitt of Getty Images were named Sports Writer and Sports Photographer of the Year at an awards ceremony in London’s West End.

2005 Journalism awards - Hewitt and Parkinson
Mike Hewitt receives his Sports Photographer of the Year award from SJA President Michael Parkinson

In the annual prizegiving organised by the Sports Journalists’ Association of Great Britain and supported by UK Sport and Laureus, Samuel became the first winner chosen by Britain’s national newspaper sports editors, who were asked to cast votes in a Eurovision Song Contest-style poll.

He triumphed from a short list which included the Sunday Telegraph’s former England cricket captain Michael Atherton, Paul Hayward and Charles Sale of the Daily Mail, James Lawton of the Independent and the Daily Telegraph’s Henry Winter.

Samuel and Hewitt were presented with the John Bromley Trophy and Ed Lacey Trophy respectively by SJA President Michael Parkinson. Hewitt, the winner in 1998, won a close run race with David Ashdown for the top photographic award, though Ashdown, of the Independent and Independent on Sunday, had the consolation of winning the award for Sports Picture and Sports News Picture of the Year for his stunning capture of Andrew Strauss’s Test match catch to dismiss Australia’s Adam Gilchrist.

2005 Journalism awards - Samuel and Parkinson
Martin Samuel, left, was acclaimed by the nationals’ sports editors as Sports Writer of the Year

The awards for journalists and photographers have been in existence for more than 30 years but this year the SJA introduced new categories for broadcasters and cartoonists.

Sky Sports’ Jeff Stelling was named Sports Broadcaster of the Year for his weekly marathon stint as presenter of Gillette Soccer Saturday, while Channel 4’s Ashes cricket coverage won Sports Programme of the Year, the award collected by Jeff Foulser of Sunset & Vine, the programme’s producers.

Nick Newman of the Sunday Times was crowned the first Sports Cartoonist of the Year.

The awards also recognise quality sports writing in the provinces and the title of Regional Sports Writer of the Year went to Martin Smith of The Star, Sheffield, for the second time in three years.

The award for Sports Story of the Year went to the News of the World’s Rob Beasley for his scoop of Chelsea tapping up Arsenal’s Ashley Cole, which won the judges’ vote ahead of Harry Harris (Daily Express) for his exposure of the Glazer family’s takeover of Manchester United.

The Daily Mail’s Charles Sale (Sports Diary) and the Daily Telegraph (Sports Team) both regained the titles they held two years ago, in the latter’s case for their Ashes cricket coverage. 

The full list of 2005 award winners:

  • Sports Writer of the Year: Martin Samuel (The Times)
  • Sports Photographer of the Year: Mike Hewitt (Getty Images)
  • Sports Story: Rob Beasley (News of the World)
  • Sports Broadcaster: Jeff Stelling (Sky Sports)
  • Sports Picture and Sports News Picture: David Ashdown (Independent and Independent on Sunday)
  • Sports News Reporter: Rob Draper (Mail on Sunday)
  • Specialist Picture Portfolio: Tom Shaw (Getty Images)
  • Sports Feature Writer: Owen Slot (The Times)
  • Columnist: James Lawton (Independent)
  • Sports Picture Portfolio: Mike Hewitt (Getty Images)
  • Interviewer: Paul Kimmage (Sunday Times)
  • Specialist Correspondent: Matt Dickinson (The Times)
  • Diary: Charles Sale (Daily Mail)
  • Team: Daily Telegraph
  • Cartoonist: Nick Newman (Sunday Times)
  • Regional Sports Writer: Martin Smith (The Star, Sheffield)
  • Sports Programme: Channel 4 Ashes coverage

The Doug Gardner Trophy for Services to Sports Journalism was awarded to David Welch, in recognition of his campaign for government support to bring the 2012 Olympics to London which he instigated towards the end of his 15 years as Daily Telegraph Sports Editor.