NZ Rugby Journalists



  • I'm curious who the fern considers the best (least worst??) rugby journalist in NZ

    There's plenty of comments around about how shit some of these writers are but do any of them deserve some praise? Anybody that provides decent analysis?



  • My favourite 3 are

    • Liam Napier (he's now moved to the Herald which means I can pretty much avoid Stuff from now on which is great)

    • Nigel Yalden (he's more radio than journalist but i'll include him)

    • Patrick McKendry

    All 3 I find tend to provide fairly balanced insight, good anaylsis without too much cheerleading whilst also having pretty good inside oil.



  • Yeah those three aren't too bad but I avoid the Herald now with their new website - it's terrible.

    I enjoy Paul Cully's articles because he is neutral. I also don't mind Marc Hinton either.

    The current generation of rugby journalists pale in comparison to those from previous years.



  • @Bovidae said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    I enjoy Paul Cully's articles because he is neutral

    He contributes to the click bait bullshit. Here's his wifes article with his son being used as a prop. Yuck.



  • Toby Robson is no longer a journo. Works for the Hurricanes now.

    Which is a shame.



  • @Bovidae Isn't Cully a Chiefs supporter?



  • @Tim I thought he is an Aussie who lives in NZ.

    Napier is a Canes supporter, and often it shows

    @Duluth I'm not reading his wife's articles. 😉



  • @Bovidae said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    @Duluth I'm not reading his wife's articles. 😉

    Another sexist Chiefs supporter..



  • steve hepburn from the odt. makes the rugby journalists from the press seem sane



  • Seti Afoa posts usually posts press conferences unadulterated on youtube for most tests and squad announcements - this earns him #1 rank. Even the AB's own youtube can't manage this for some reason, very good insights buried in answers to seemingly banal questions.

    Yalden is really good, unfortunately his insight and analysis is spread among his FB, radio sport hits and his live commentary (which face it, we rarely listen to).

    Napier is the best of the press.

    Gifford - when he does delve back into rugby - is usually the only other one that seems worth reading.

    TJ writes a weekly article/blog for Supersport in South Africa which is outstanding providing it isn't Crusader related.



  • Not sure if he still does them, but Marshall did some great analytical pieces (in the Herald I think they were)

    Sumo can write some great pieces too, although the better ones are probably more emotive rugby centric than analytical.



  • @rotated said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    Seti Afoa posts usually posts press conferences unadulterated on youtube for most tests and squad announcements - this earns him #1 rank. Even the AB's own youtube can't manage this for some reason, very good insights buried in answers to seemingly banal questions.

    I subscribe to him too. He also seems to get some pretty good interviews for his channel.



  • @taniwharugby said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    Not sure if he still does them, but Marshall did some great analytical pieces (in the Herald I think they were)

    Sumo can write some great pieces too, although the better ones are probably more emotive rugby centric than analytical.

    Along those lines John Drake RIP was probably the best NZ Herald ex-player columnist.

    Fox was OK too but a little dry/generic.



  • @Milk said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    @rotated said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    Seti Afoa posts usually posts press conferences unadulterated on youtube for most tests and squad announcements - this earns him #1 rank. Even the AB's own youtube can't manage this for some reason, very good insights buried in answers to seemingly banal questions.

    I subscribe to him too.

    +1 Once I found someone who put up the entire press conference I was very pleased. Makes a nice difference from the selective editing media and PR people engage in.



  • @rotated said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    Yalden is really good, unfortunately his insight and analysis is spread among his FB, radio sport hits and his live commentary (which face it, we rarely listen to).

    Napier is the best of the press.

    Gifford - when he does delve back into rugby - is usually the only other one that seems worth reading.

    A couple of blokes you probably haven't heard of, but who are seriously quality are Rattue & Reason.

    Being serious, Yalden, Robson, Napier are my favourites. Cully is also good, but he's not a Kiwi.

    I usually like Gifford, but he has been awful this series: a series of whinging articles, unsurprisingly picked up on by the international press (no Phil, the late charge on Barrett after the kick was not red-card worthy...).



  • @rotated said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    Seti Afoa posts usually posts press conferences unadulterated on youtube for most tests and squad announcements - this earns him #1 rank. Even the AB's own youtube can't manage this for some reason, very good insights buried in answers to seemingly banal questions.

    Yeah I strongly suggest watching the unadulterated press conferences as it'll save you hours of frustration reading those fluffed up reports in popular media. The tone of voice, the questions, the atmosphere are so much more informative and you don't have to read some hack's lurid interpretation of what these guys say



  • @Rapido said in NZ Rugby Journalists:

    Toby Robson is no longer a journo. Works for the Hurricanes now.

    Which is a shame.

    It is a damn shame , it wasn't that long ago he hung up his boots either . His story about playing against Umaga when he was playing for the first time for Petone was bloody good.



  • I was always a massive fan of Toby Robson.

    Must say though I've read a bit of what Gordon D'Arcy has written and I wish we had an ex player here who could write as well and as incisively as he can. Really breaks play down and pulls it apart.



  • There are two main problems with rugby writing in places like the Herald and Stuff.
    One is that the writers are expected as part of their day jobs to fill out the days content. Readers want to read things and they want to provide that but what happens is they seem to be expected to either fill the role (sometimes gleefully) of clickbaiter or just write basically nothing with the odd little new fact thrown in.
    Secondly they are rarely given scope to write at the length and depth that decent insight/analysis requires. The only times they are given that scope it is to write something 'investigative' like the head injury series of articles.
    What is starting to develop though (with a few false starts) are avenues for the same writers/journalists to have a crack at freelance content of a little more depth or of a different angle.
    I checkplaces like https://www.newsroom.co.nz/@sportsroom every few days and am usually surpirised to read quite good stuff from writers whose work I don't usually rate.
    Here is a good example by Steve Deane https://www.newsroom.co.nz/@rugby/2017/07/02/37013/benchmarking-sbws-act-of-thuggery
    and surprisingly another from Jim Kayes (even though he can be a dick) https://www.newsroom.co.nz/@rugby/2017/07/04/37325/captain-reads-biggest-test-is-upon-him
    I do think a lot of our rugby hacks are only hacking because that's their job requirement. Many have the capability to be much better given the right avenue.



  • Our very own... @His-Bobness @Smudge @Mullet Barnya


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