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Basic Sports Writing

Tips and Pitfalls

What Is Sports News?

Sports news is in the sports section of a newspaper in which the sportswriter reports the scenes of sports, tournaments and games such as athletics, football, baseball, basketball, volleyball, handball, softball, tennis table tennis, boxing, swimming, gymnastics, archery, fencing, golf, squash, shooting, rowing, rugby football, American football, hockey, billiards and snooker, wrestling, bowling, canoeing, cycling, equestrian events, tae kwon do, judo, arnis, sepak takraw, weightlifting, yachting, and Muay Thai.

Essential Ingredients of Sports Story

The Teams and the score Reference to whether it was a championship or an exhibition game Site of the game When the game was played Key plays (who made them, and who was responsible for calling them, etc.) Scoring summary

Essential Ingredients of Sports Story

References to the star players
Key offensive statistics Key defensive statistics Direct quotes by the players Direct quotes by the coaches

Essential Ingredients of Sports Story

Weather and its effect on the
game Injuries and condition updates Results of previous games between the teams

Overall records

Essential Ingredients of Sports Story

Conference records
Reference to national rankings, if relevant Next games for both teams Historical significance, if any, of the


Gathering Sports Materials

Gathering information before the game: 1. Read the rules 2. Know key people 3. Get the names in full and check the spelling 4. Attend sports events and practice sessions 5. Make notes on things that count 6. Read various newspapers

Gathering Sports Materials

Gathering information during the game: 1. Organize your materials 2. Be there well ahead of the event 3. Secure a good working place 4. Note interesting events before the game 5. Develop a system of note-taking 6. Make notes as complete as possible 7. Observe:

Important plays The unexpected or unusual Personal standouts on things other than point scoring Touches of humor or the light things

Gathering Sports Materials

Gathering information after the game: 1. Seek out the coaches, outstanding players 2. Get quotes 3. Check facts, especially scores 4. Gather more information from:

Special statistics Newspaper stories Game moves Box scores Standings

Gathering Sports Materials

Gathering information after the game: 1. Seek out the coaches, outstanding players 2. Get quotes 3. Check facts, especially scores 4. Gather more information from:

Special statistics Newspaper stories Game moves Box scores Standings

Types of Sports Stories

The Advance

Story The Game Story The Follow-up Story The post mortem story

Writing the Sports Story

Good sports writing is good news writing

Structure of Sports News

The headline must describe the whole story The lead may be summarized or analyzed; it may give the significance, the winner, the hero, the score. The score is usually played up in the first sentence or set in bold above the story proper.

Structure of Sports News

The body plays up other elements not in the lead and gives detail of those already mentioned.
Key play an outstanding performer Quotations from players, trainers and coaches Play-by-play account (seldom found in the school paper for lack of space) Personalities Background of players Importance of the event Summaries of results and statistics (these may be complied for future reference)

Parts of a Sports Story

Headline Lead


Organizing the story

The sports writer wisely may adopt the Boy Scout motto: Be prepared The sports writer usually knows in advance whether there is a press box He should take notes systematically The sports writer must concentrate on the game The sports writer for broadcast media must keep up with the action The sports writer writes his story after the game

Writing the Sports Story

Since good sports writing is good news writing, the sports writer should, by now, organize his story in the inverted pyramid structure. The sports writer will include the five Ws and H in the first few paragraphs and will include as many elements as possible

Two requisites of good sports story

Impartiality and accuracy

Check your facts carefully

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Names of players Names of teams Final Score Individual scores Tabulations

Pitfalls to avoid
Writing in sports jargon Organizing a game summary in chronological order Narrating play-by-play Becoming a critic Failing to get specific facts Writing with too many adjectives and adverbs Too much clichs

A Good Sports Writer

A sports writer must be a natural descriptive writer It is important that the sports writer must have a feeling and genuine love Training is important in this form of editorial life The sports writer must always be in the struggle in finding new words The sports writer must be endowed with a keen memory Sportsmanship Ability to report accurately a fast contest A style of writing that includes familiarity with sports terms A basic knowledge of sports rules and regulations A specialized use of summary and feature leads

Popular Sports

Basketball Volleyball Boxing Billiards Football (Soccer) Tennis Golf Cycling Athletics, Track and Field Baseball/Softball Football (Rugby) Badminton

Philippine Soccer Team Azkals

Philippine Rugby Team Volcanoes

Efren Bata Reyes and Django Bustamante

Manny Pacquiao

Philippine Dragon Boat Team

Jeson Patrombon

Wesley So

Tim Lincecum (Filipino/White) Known as: Professional Baseball Player (Starting Pitcher for the San Francisco Giants of Major League Baseball; Two-time Cy Young Award winner; Four-time All-Star; 2010 Babe Ruth Award Winner; 2008 MLB Strikeout Champion; Three-time National League Strikeout Champion)

Ateneo nears elimination-round sweep

Cebu Daily News7:08 am | Sunday, September 4th, 2011

THE SECOND encounter proved to be just as one-sided as the first one as the Ateneo Blue Eagles moved a win away from achieving a sweep of the elimination round after they disposed of the National University (NU) Bulldogs, 61-39, in the 74th UAAP basketball tournament yesterday at the Araneta Coliseum. The four-time champions Eagles are now just a victory away from gaining an outright seat in the finals, but will be hardpressed to complete the feat with the Adamson Soaring Falcons standing in their way.

Struggling to bust the Bulldogs zone all game, the defending champion turned to its defense and held NU to its lowest scoring output since the start of the archiving of statistics in the UAAP in 2003. A telling third period exploit triggered by a 10-0 blast to conclude the first half gave the Blue Eagles their commanding advantage as they dropped 22 points compared to the Bulldogs eight in one just one quarter.

Mainstays Kirk Long and Nico Salva and newcomers Kiefer Ravena and Greg Slaughter took turns in the demolition job, churning out double-double scoring. Salva, whose slam with 7:36 in the fourth quarter spiked the lead to 24 points, 55-31, produced a game-best 14 points even as Slaughter, Ravena and Long added 13, 12 and 10 markers respectively. Long, who was tasked to contain NU Ray Parks, held the hyped rookie to just 10 points on 3-of-14 shooting and forced him to commit five turnovers.

Parks and Emmanuel Mbe contributed 10 points each in a losing cause for NU. /Correspondent Jonas Panerio

Alaska's storied partnership ends By Olmin Leyba (The Philippine Star) Updated September 02,
2011 12:00 AM MANILA, Philippines - The Alaska Aces ball club and long-time coach Tim Cone officially parted ways yesterday, ending probably the most successful team-mentor partnership in the Philippine Basketball Association. As theres been a lot of speculations, questions, we felt its important to address the issue professionally. Were now confirming that we have released Tim Cone as head coach of Alaska Aces, team owner Wilfred Steven Uytengsu said in a press conference in Makati. Cone handled the coaching chores for Alaska the past 22 years, leading them to 13 championships spiked by a rare grand slam in 1996 and a near-triple crown in 1998. The former TV analyst steered the franchise to 25 Finals

Tim wants to explore other options, challenge himself, pursue other horizons. Were saddened but of course, we wish him well. We really had quite a journey. We know theres never been a 22-year partnership like this in the PBA and there never will be another,Uytengsu said. Im disappointed, though, that Im not gonna see Tim break Baby Dalupans record while coaching Alaska, he added, referring to the legendary Crispa mentor who owns 15 PBA titles, just two ahead of Cone.

Uytengsu said the show goes on for Alaska and for starters, they are elevating senior assistant Joel Banal to Cones old job. I wouldnt consider it a rest; more of a change in direction, kind of parting of ways, not a breakup, and taking a different career path, Cone said in explaining his decision to ask for a release from Alaska. The grapevine is swirling with talks of Cone supposedly moving to another team but the multi-titled mentor himself said hes not going anywhere for now.

I dont have any firm offer. I have close friends saying theres this or that but Ive not done anything. Im kinda open, he said. Saying goodbye to a long-time partner was quite emotionally draining for Cone. Ive been actually married to the Alaska organization longer than Im married to my wife, said a teary-eyed Cone. The hardest thing for me right now is leaving the players. When I saw them here, its like a sledgehammer hitting my heart. I dont want anyone to feel Im abandoning them but in fact I am so it kills me, he said, getting a warm

Special Mass held for Pacquiao, Marquez at Manila Cathedral

A special Mass was held Sunday at the Manila Cathedral for Filipino boxing icon Sarangani Rep. Emmanuel Manny" Pacquiao and Mexican legend Juan Manuel Marquez, who will face each other in the ring on November 12. Manila Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo presided over the Mass that started shortly after 8:30 a.m., according to a report by radio dzBBs Manny Vargas. But Pacquiao and his party had yet to arrive more than 10 minutes after the Mass started, the report added. In contrast, Marquez received an early tour of the historic Manila Cathedral after he and his party arrived early. Marquez wore denim pants and a purple shirt, the report added. Cathedral rector Msgr. Nestor Cerbo led officials in giving Marquez a tour of the historic structure. Security was tight at the Cathedral, which was packed with regular Sunday churchgoers. Pacquiao and Marquez held a face-off in Manila Saturday to promote their November 12 bout. The two are to leave abroad to promote the bout further before going into training. LBG, GMA News

Manny Pacquiao unrelenting in workout

By Ronnie Nathanielsz, Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILAManny Pacquiao hurt his left wrist early in a punch mitts session with Filipino trainer Buboy Fernandez on Thursday evening at the Planet Jupiter Gym in Makati City. But after a short break, Pacquiao shrugged off the discomfort and continued his workout for six rounds inbetween discussing strategy with Fernandez on how to counter Juan Manuel Marquez favorite right straight and uppercut. Pacquiao told the Inquirer that Fernandez was adept at strategy for the Marquez duel at the MGM Grand on Nov. 12 because he watched my two previous fights with Marquez and he knows his style.

Pacquiao was throwing combinations to the mid-section which was protected by a bodyguard when he inadvertently landed a hard left on the punch-mitt that Fernandez used to cushion the impact of Pacquiaos body shots. Pacquiao appeared to twist his left wrist as he connected and shouted and grimaced in apparent pain with adviser Michael Koncz and Fernandez himself showing concern. But Pacquiao made Fernandez remove his body-guard and Pacquiao went through his regular routine working on the speed ball along with skipping rope and a series of

Although he was faster and hit harder on the fourth day of his return to the gym after a four-month layoff since his last fight against Shane Mosley, Pacquiao said he was not satisfied because I am only 50 percent. Reacting to Marquezs earlier statement warning him to train hard because their fight was going to be a war, Pacquiao replied: Its going to be a war for him, for me its going to be fun. But Pacquiao later insisted that it will be a good fight and well give the fans a great fight to watch. Fernandez said that Pacquiaos trainer Freddie Roach had taught him how to handle light training at the start of his workouts.