CWC TEAMS UP WITH ICC TO RUN WORKSHOPS FOR STUDENT SPORTS JOURNALISTS
The Cricket Writers’ Club have been asked by the ICC to run workshops for student sports journalists at three venues during this year’s World Cup. Bruce Talbot has organised the workshops for CWC in conjunction with ICC and the first took place at The Oval on Tuesday, 4th June, when Lizzy Ammon and Will Macpherson conducted a Q&A session with the young journalists. One student from each workshop will attend the semi-final at Edgbaston on July 11 and write a report for the ICC website. The winner will then attend the final and win a $500 prize.
Anna Parkinson, who is studying sports journalism at the University of Lincoln, has written a piece about her experience at The Oval:
Cricket. With its fast-paced bowling, big-hitting batsmen, numerous overs and fans yelling “Howzat” in the stadium to guarantee a passionate atmosphere and experience. I’d go as far to say cricket offers more fluctuation than an action film.
You may ask why I decided to go for this opportunity. Well, what’s life if you don’t take every opportunity you can? Aside this, cricket holds a special sentiment in my family down the generations from my Great, Great Grandfather, my Grandad, to my Dad, to me. It’s a feel-good, fun sport which I’m reminded of every time I am home. Mainly because my Dad proudly displays a framed photograph of him batting in a local match on the mantlepiece.
From the perspective of an aspiring, young, female journalist it’s important to get involved with as much as possible - whether it be sport-related or not. My passion for writing and quest to get as much out of my time at the University of Lincoln encouraged me to take this opportunity.
The morning of the workshop arrived. Numerous train changes later, I found myself walking up Harleyford Road, made famous by Henry Blofeld in many Test match commentaries. With the MI6 behind me, I could see it. The Oval, a ground encompassing so much history. Typically, my Dad and I were accompanied by good old British weather. Rain.
Soon after arriving, our group was shown around the Oval. We were then taken to a press conference with none other than New Zealand Vice Capitan Tom Latham. I don’t think the term ‘star struck’ covers it.
The time came for us to embark on some work. Firstly, a quotes-based press report. A completely unknown territory. The challenge of writing up Latham’s conference as a piece of journalism filled me with apprehension. But looking out onto the iconic Oval ground ignited my determination to complete this task to the best of my ability. Before I knew it, I’d done it. My first ever press report.
Soon, it was time for lunch. Always a talking point in the commentary box at a cricket match, especially the cake. This time we had a fruit cake to enjoy before the next task.
A match report on England v Pakistan. The calm tranquillity of the Oval added to the awe-inspiring atmosphere, which encouraged me to believe in my ability. 502 words later, I’d finished.
We then had a Q&A with two industry professionals. Will Macpherson and Lizzy Ammon. Listening to the work they do was captivating, even the reality of a 17-and-a-half-hour day. Being the only girl at the workshop, it was refreshing to find that there are equal opportunities in journalism for both men and women after University.
Before I knew it, the final part of the day had arrived. A press conference with Bangladesh’s coach, Steve Rhodes. With my media accreditation proudly hanging from my neck, my phone and laptop to hand, I felt a sense of belonging. The nerves I felt when I arrived had been discarded like a pile of unwanted baggage.
Yesterday’s experience taught me a lot. Firstly, to go for it, no matter how daunting it may seem. The nerves which flooded my body like a tidal wave were far outweighed by the sensations of inspiration and enjoyment I gained throughout the whole experience. Secondly, to believe in myself - I am filled with pride when I reflect on the work I produced.