Doha: Sports journalists around the world have been honored for their outstanding work as Doha yesterday hosted the spectacular AIPS Sport Media Awards 2022 in an open-air ceremony at the Khalifa International Stadium – a venue for the FIFA World Cup FIFA, Qatar 2022.
HE Sheikh Faisal bin Ahmed Al Thani, Chairman of the Qatar Sports Press Committee (QSPC), Saad Al Rumaihi, Chairman of the Qatar Press Center, Gianni Merlo, Chairman of the International Sports Press Association (AIPS), and journalists from around the world were present the ceremony.
AIPS organized the ceremony in partnership with QSPC as part of a common desire to invest in cultural and sports journalism.
More than 30 reporters, photographers and videographers were honored at the ceremony as representatives from Serbia, China, USA, France, Australia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Algeria, Namibia, UK, Iran, New Zealand, Argentina, Puerto Rico, Ghana, Uganda, Italy and India were present.
The gala, hosted by Italian journalist Valentina Clemente, began with a tribute to Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, who was shot dead by Israeli forces last month.
“She was one of us; she always wanted to tell what had really happened. We want to give her a special award to tell her what she meant to us,” AIPS President Merlo said after the announcement of an honorary award for the Palestinian journalist.
Merlo also thanked Qatar for hosting the superb edition of the AIPS Sport Media Awards.
“I would like to thank Sheikh Faisal. Without him, we couldn’t be here tonight,” he said.
Sheikh Faisal said: “I would like to congratulate all the winners as well as all the journalists for their hard work. We hope to have a bright future with AIPS. I thank everyone here and hope we can have this show again.
More than 1,700 journalists submitted their work for the awards as last night’s ceremony followed the announcement of the final three nominees for each category yesterday.
Serbian Andrej Isakovic won the Sport Action Photography category for ‘The Halo Effect’ (AFP), the Formula 1 photo showing Verstappen’s car on top of Hamilton’s, the tire almost touching his helmet.
Isakovic was followed by Andre Durao (Brazil) and Felix Sanchez Arrazola (Spain) respectively.
“I hope you liked all the photos on the podium, because that’s what we do every day. And today I’m more excited than when I took the Formula 1 photo,” said Isakovic.
In the Writing – Best Color Piece category, first place went to Wufei Yu (China) and Will Ford (USA), followed by Jose Encarnacion (Puerto Rico) and Nick Hope (UK).
Matthieu Darnon (France) won the Video Documentary category, followed by David Harrison (UK) and Christoph Nahr (Germany).
Australian Tracey Holmes took top honors in the Audio category, while Dario Ricci (Italy) and Ronny Blaschke (Germany) took the next two spots.
“I would like to thank our hosts, Qatar, in this year of the 2022 World Cup, which comes with challenges, but it will be remembered by how you met those challenges, the men and women of Qatar. “, said Holmes.
In the Photographic Portfolio category, first place went to Brazilian Ueslei Marcelino, for his impressive Tokyo 2020 boxing portfolio. Clive Mason (UK) and Loic Venance (France) took second and third places.
The Investigative Reporting category saw three winners, Omar Boudi and Zoher Boudi; Dimitar and Tasev (Bulgaria) and Michael Uugwanga (Namibia). In the Video Athlete Profile category, William Moss (USA) took first place while Kate Rowan from the UK won the Best Column category.
In the Video Short Film category, Iranian Maziyar Koupidar won the trophy while the Young Reporters category had three winners: Joe Allison (New Zealand) in photography, José Encarnación (Puerto Rico) in writing and Francis Hema (Ghana) in broadcasting.
Each winner received $8,000 in prize money in addition to the trophy while reporters claiming second and third place received $3,000 and $2,000 respectively.
Meanwhile, the special categories celebrated the career of Joachim Awuley Lartey (Ghana), a 95-year-old African journalism legend.
“I say thank you ever since I left Ghana and was brought here, and I can’t stop saying thank you. Since the establishment of the national association in Ghana, progress has been made. And progress in sports journalism will continue until the end of time,” said Lartey, who received a standing ovation from honorees and guests at the most emotional moment of the gala.
With additional information from AIPS