WOMEN’S SPORT VS THE MEDIA – WEEKEND NEWSPAPER ROUND UP

Sunday 30th September

As you may be able to tell from recent blog posts, there’s been a lot going on in the world of women’s sport recently.  Netball, T20 Cricket, Track Cycling, Football and probably a lot we haven’t even known about, but what will our great and marvellous media make of it all?  Will there be pages dedicated to all these sporting achievements?  Half pages?  Columns? Nibs? Any sort of recognition at all?  Let us find out…

Sunday Mirror

Sports pages: 15 and the 20 page Sunday Mirror football Pull out

Women’s sport: about 200 words.

Now, although 200 words about women’s sport would make us very irritated, after last week’s shambles we must instead stand and applaud the Sunday Mirror for their discovery that women actually play sport.  Well done Mirror, well done.  Admittedly these few paragraphs are at the bottom of a page in the Football Pull out section of the paper, but they are there none the less, providing us with a brief account of the Double Arsenal Ladies are chasing this week.  One of those titles has been achieved this afternoon as the Female Gunners (F’unners?) took the WSL titles for the 3rd year in a row, beating the Doncaster Belles 3-2 in their final match of the season, whilst the second is the opportunity to knock Barcelona out of the Championship League on Thursday.  There’s even a quote and everything from Arsenal’s Manager Laura Harvey AND  a photo about the size of a five pence piece of her face.  Again, well done Sunday Mirror. Give yourself a pat on the back for realising the female race can and do play sport to a report worthy level.

The Sunday Times

Sports pages:16

Women’s sport: About a page

This week The Sunday Times will have us all remember that it has been hosting the ‘Sunday Times Sports Woman of the Year Awards‘ for the last 25 years and nominations are now open for the 2012 awards.  This promo of the awards is accompanied by a good interview with Charlotte Dujardin, as she is an example of a nomination worthy sports woman, and photos of her not only on her gold medal partner, her horse Valegro and winning said medal, but also looking lovely wearing a sparkly frock and smiling.  This is because woman not only play sport, but can wear dresses too and the nation must know this.  I hope when the shortlist for BBC sports personality of the year 2012 is announced, Wiggins, Hoy, Weir et all are all pictured smiling in top hat and tails.

Anyhoo I digress.  It is actually brilliant that the ST have these awards and through them bring attention to the dedicated sports women on this fair isle, however this is then made slightly sour by the paper the proceeding to not mention any other women’s sport bar a page long 3inch wide report on England ladies cricket, squashed in beside a page dedicated to the men’s game.  To put it into perspective, the word count for the women’s article, which talks of how the England Ladies have already cruised their way to the semis of the T20 world cup, is equal to an article about the W’indies and Sri Lanka match in the men’s T20.  They’re not even our national team people. Sort it out.

The Observer

Sports pages: 18

Women’s sport: Probably a page if you put it all in together.

Oh the sodding Ryder Cup.  Who cares?  Apparently The Observer (and the billions of golf fans the world over) as they dedicate a large chunk of this week’s sport pages to it.  Although the amount written about women’s sport is pretty limited, at least The Observer has covered a few different types of sport, with a two paragraph preview of the Arsenal Ladies game, about 1/6th of a page about Laura Robson and women’s tennis, 1/4 page to England’s cricketing prowess in the Women’s World T20 and a paragraph on the new faces in the velodrome at the National Track Championships looking to fill the gap that Pendle’s has left.  On top of that there is also a nib about how USA’s Kerri Walsh-Jennings, who, along with her team mate Misty May won gold in the beach volleyball at this year’s Olympics, was actually carrying her third child during the games?!  Where she put this child whilst she wore her tiny B.V uniform (bikini) I do not know, but that woman is as tough as nails.

The Sunday Telegraph

Sports pages: 14

Women’s sport: 250 words?

More Ryder Cup.  Everywhere.  Oh and a small bit of football.  More football, some racing, cricket, the rugby and Lewis Hamilton.  In amongst this testosterone fuelled middle class romp through the world of sport, the Sunday Telegraph hasn’t completely forgotten women, allowing a whole 250 words to celebrate England’s women easing into the last four of the T20 world cup.  Beating India by 9 wickets and securing a semi-final place provides women’s cricket a small article and no photo in the STel.

I’ve also gone through the paper a few times now but can’t find any mention of the WSL or Arsenal Ladies anywhere, but maybe I’ve just missed it.  Please do correct me on this if so.

The Independent

Sports pages:28

Women’s Sport: Roughly 2 at  a push

My hands are stained with ink, I’ve got a paper cut and if I read anything else about the Ryder Cup I may cry (I’m sorry, I just really don’t get golf), but once more unto the breach dear friends as we see what The Independent has to offer on women’s sport.  The answer is actually not too bad, with a whole page interview with Pendles on the intensity of training and how she plans to be normal once she leaves Strictly, a paragraph or two on England’s T20 Women’s world cup campaign (WITH A PHOTO!) and a 250 ish word report on Arsenal Ladies.  Did you know that today when Arsenal lifted the WSL trophy that was the club’s 37th major piece of silverware in 25 years?

So there we have it, another slightly depressing look at the UK’s top press title’s representation of women’s sport. Maybe we missed a few bits?  Quite possibly and if we did please let us know, but until next week keeeeeep dancing. (Gangnam Style)

FQ

Images from me, http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2012 and http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/cricket/19777746 (thanks!)

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