One day I will begin waking up early enough in the day to actually procure all of the papers before they are snarfled up by paper-hungry South West Londoners. That day is not today and so I come before you sans-Independent. Which is a great shame, seeing as theirs is the paper currently holding the gauntlet of women’s sport aloft. This, then, shall be the week of the contenders.
The Mail on Sunday
Buried amidst the pages and pages of football is…football! Or, more specifically, a brief report on England’s comprehensive 6-0 victory over Belarus in yesterday’s opening qualifying match for the 2015 tournament. Elsewhere there is brief mention of Amy Ryan’s decision not to ride until 2014 following her fall at York in July, but withstanding these two brief mentions, there is not a single world written elsewhere. Ouch.
The Sunday Telegraph
It took three reads through the football section to spot it, but there, buried next to two Championship match reports (for non-football types, that’s the old Second Division in the men’s game) is a tiny, non-bylined mention of England’s victory over Belarus. What makes this even more special is the way it only seems to warrant a mention because of its links to the men’s game – scorer of England’s sixth goal, Eni Aluko, being the sister of Hull City striker Sone Aluko who also scored yesterday. I checked the Hull City match report, by the way. No mention of Eni at all. Shock, that.
A Press Association report of the women’s football represents a disappointing start for a paper that has done more than most to offer women’s sport mainstream media coverage, but the next page brings something far better – a full page interview with Lizzie Armitstead, Britain’s brilliant first medalist of London 2012, and one of cycling’s highest profile campaigners for sporting equality. That there is nothing else to report for this week is a touch disappointing.
The Sunday Times
The obligatory women’s football writeup (with an actual byline this time – congratulations, Peter Game!) is backed up brilliantly by a first call to arms for the Sunday Times Sports Women of the Year awards including Sky Sports’ newly announced commitment to women’s sport. There’s also a NIB covering Shuai Zhang’s first WTA title at the Guangzhou Open and a full interview with England’s netball captain, Pamela Cookey, whose side take on South Africa this afternoon – and can be seen doing so on Sky Sports 4. Netball. Earning equal billing to Mark Cavendish’s Tour of Britain stage win yesterday. In a national paper. This is, frankly, astonishing. Not a lot else to mention, but comfortably the best of the lot.
Picture from zimbio.com – thanks!