Sexton shoots for back-to-back media awards

by admin

Bowls in South Australia is currently experiencing somewhat of a renaissance in terms of media coverage of the sport in that state from covering pennant competitions, to the feats of high performing athletes to the recent inaugural Australian Premier League featuring the birth of the Adelaide Endurance franchise. One esteemed journalist in particular is taking the human interest angles and the stories about the people of the sport to the lounge rooms across South Australia and is being recognised for his efforts at the Bowls Australia annual awards ceremony. Michael Sexton, from the ABC’s nightly current affairs program 730 Adelaide, was acknowledged at the awards ceremony last year in Bendigo for his insight into the inner sanctum of the Bowls Australia High Performance unit as they prepared for the 2012 World Championships that were held in Adelaide during November and December of that year. Sexton became the third recipient of the Bowls Australia Story of the Year award following the successes of Roger Oldridge (Channel 10) and Pat McErlean (Lawn Bowls World – radio) in 2012. Sexton’s expose on the intense preparations of Australia ahead the revered World Championships included interviews with National Coach Steve Glasson, world number 1 Leif Selby and young Raymond Terrace gun Natasha Scott (nee Van Eldik). Little did Sexton know at the time of filming that his insight into the Jackaroos preceded the most successful World Championships by any country ever with Australia collecting five gold and two silver medals including Selby and Karen Murphy’s gold medal singles winning performances. Accepting the award last year in Bendigo was really special for Sexton who began his journalism career at 3BO in Bendigo some 30 years prior. “In the 30 years since then, I’ve covered a lot of sport and I’ve covered a lot of elite athletes and I’ve got to say the Australian and New Zealand bowls teams in Adelaide were probably the warmest and most welcoming group I’ve ever dealt with and I’m serious about that,” Sexton said on accepting his award. “It was an absolute pleasure to do that story.” And Sexton has been at it again! In 2014, he has been named as a finalist in the Story of the Year category again with another outstanding piece on young 19-year-old South Australian star Renee McPharlin from the Balaklava Bowling Club. Sexton was present at the awards last year as McPharlin was crowned the 2013 Bowls Australia Under-18 Bowler of Year. Sexton is named as a finalist in the 2014 Story of the Year category alongside Matt Turner and Rob Greenwood from Messenger Community News who comprehensively covered the Adelaide Endurance’s involvement in the Australian Premier League. The Bowls Australia Awards Night will be held at the Burnie Arts and Function Centre on Saturday, March 29. For more information on the awards night, click here . To view Michael Sexton accepting his 2013 award and a brief snippets of his award-winning story from last year, click here Photo: Michael Sexton with the Mayor of Bendigo, Cr. Lisa Ruffell