Britain has celebrated a win double at AIPS Congress in the 2014 Winter Olympic Games host city of Sochi.
Long-serving SJA chairman Barry Newcombe was voted on to the executive committee of the international sports journalists’ association while Jayne Pearce collected its award, on behalf of London 2012, for the best media facilities at a sports event last year.
Newcombe had run for membership of the 19-strong executive twice before without success. He said: “I am proud and honoured to have been voted on to the executive and I’ll do my best to justify the confidence shown in me by our international colleagues.
“AIPS does a remarkable job and I’m looking forward to sharing in the work which is undeniably considerable across many areas of sports journalism. I am also aware that the SJA is Europe’s most significant supporters of AIPS through our many hundreds of card-holders.”
The SJA has the largest membership of all the national sports journalism associations within AIPS, but this will be the first time that Britain has had a seat on the organisation’s executive for a decade. Newcombe already chairs AIPS’ rugby union commission, while Keir Radnedge is the chair of AIPS’ football commission.
Re-elected unopposed for further four-year terms were Italy’s Gianni Merlo as president and Turkey’s Esat Yilmaer as first vice-president.
Congress was opened formally on Monday by a high-level host delegation led by Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko. It closes tonight after a variety of presentations and visits to the outstanding venues of the coastal and mountain clusters for next February’s Winter Games.
Among the presentations to congress from international sports federations, events and host cities was an insight from Nenad Lalovic, acting president of the world wrestling federation FILA, about its last-minute fight to try to retain its place on the Olympic programme from 2020.