First up, The Observer. Usually a reasonable advocate of women’s sport The Observer has certainly made us shake our heads and expel sighs loaded with disappointment this week, with the first story and only story about women’s sport being on page 13 (the article on Oprah’s upcoming interview with mega cheat Lance Armstrong doesn’t really count as, as much as we respect the Oprah, she is no athlete). In the lead up to the Australian Open, tennis super machine Serena Williams is apparently playing coy off the court and refusing to comment on her World No.1 ranking play or how she thinks she’ll do in the tournament, something The Observer has gone out of their way to report on and accompany with a slightly odd photo of Williams in training using a skipping rope. Of all the photos in the world of Serena, you know, playing tennis, they opt for one with her mid leap over her skipping rope…
The Sunday Telegraph
The STel, bible for the baby boomers, lovers of all things Tory and not an avid fan of women doing any sort of physical activity. Consequently we don’t tend to have a lot of hope when we pull back the cover of the sports section and begin our search for anything to do with women in sport. However this week they have done themselves proud with an article and photo of a female tennis star. Admittedly the article is of Sharapova in all her blonde beauty, accompanied by a photo about the size of a postage stamp and dwarfed further by the massive photo of a topless, sweaty Murray mid serve (*Vomit*) but at least they’ve actually written something about those that make up 51% of the earth’s population. Turns out that Sharapova has her own business set up for a life post tennis career, ‘Sugarpova’, her very own sweetie brand.
The Sunday Times
The ST has gone a little tennis mental this week in the run up to the Australian Open, with a huge double page on all the matches, reviews of the British players showing their form on the court in Melbourne, as well as column articles from retired tennis-y pros on their comments, predictions etc. There is also again the photo of sweaty, topless Murray that has almost made me bring my dinner up again. However in good news there are articles on both Laura Robson and Heather Watson and their thoughts and feelings about the upcoming tournament. There’s also an article about Cross Country European Champion Jess Coulson, a product of Kelly Holmes’s Athletic training camps ‘On Camp with Kelly’ that have now finally reached their end.
The Sunday Mirror
Like clockwork there it is, the same small 200 worder on women’s football tucked away in the top corner of one of the back pages of the Sunday Mirror’s Football pull out paper. Week after week it’s there, this week being the only mention of women playing sport in the whole paper. The focus this time is on the sudden death matches currently taking place in the Women’s Premier League Cup, with some fighting talk from 22 year old Coventry Striker Helen Dermody on her hope to beat Aston Villa today and claim Coventry’s place in the quarter finals. Sadly I can’t give you the final score of that game as I can’t seem to find it online ANYWHERE.
The Indie opens with a bit of a mention in females in sport as the article about the new international grand prix circuit being put in place for elite athletes with disabilities contains quotes from the new commercial director of UK Athletics, a Paralympian in her own right. All this and we haven’t even got past the first page yet.
the Indie are obviously on a mission this week to point out that women can work in sports related roles, featuring an interview with the leading contender for the IOC’s top role, Nawal El Moutawakel. Oh and turns out that as well as possibly running the IOC, she is also the first Muslim woman to ever win a gold medal, winning the inaugural 400m hurdles race at the 1984 games in Los Angeles. Beside her interview sits a list of the various women taking over top dog seats in sporting organisations and industries as well as the bold claim that Britain is a world leader in women successfully storming sport’s hitherto male bastions. Now if only it could also become a world leader in taking Women’s sport seriously….
Image from http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/tennis/ (thanks!)