Sportsmail’s Al-Samarrai wins incredible double at sports journalism Oscars
RIATH AL-SAMARRAI struck gold for Sportsmail on Monday with a magnificent double at the British Sports Journalism Awards — the industry’s Oscars.
Our Chief Sports Feature Writer won Sportswriter of the Year and News Reporter of the Year, after breaking the sensational story that Conor Benn had failed a drugs test before his fight with Chris Eubank Jnr, which saw the bout called off at the 11th hour.
He also led the way on golf’s civil war with LIV and boxing’s links to suspected crime boss Daniel Kinahan, as well as powerful interviews with stars such as Neville Southall, Katarina Johnson-Thompson and Steve Thompson. Al-Samarrai said: ‘I remember coming into journalism 20 years ago and being told, “This is a dying industry”, which was as much nonsense then as it is now. It’s just a changing industry. There has never been a more important time for journalism, particularly within sport. To be
rewarded in this way is the most wonderful thing.’
Rob Draper was named Football News Reporter of the Year and won the Social Media Journalism award for his live reporting of the chaos around last year’s Champions League final in Paris. Isaan Khan collected the Ian Wooldridge Trophy, named after our late, great sportswriter, after winning the One to Watch award in the writing category.