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The New York Times disbands Sports Desk

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The New York Times is disbanding its sports department and will rely on coverage from The Athletic, a website it acquired last year for $550 million.

The decision impacts more than 35 people in the sports department, according to The New York Times. Journalists on the sports desk will move to other roles within the newsroom and no layoffs are planned.

“Though we know this decision will be disappointing to some, we believe it is the right one for readers and will allow us to maximize the respective strengths of The Times’s and The Athletic’s newsrooms,” New York Times Co. Chairman A.G. Sulzberger and CEO Meredith Kopit Levien wrote Monday in a letter to staff.

They say sports coverage will be expanded under the shift.

“Under our plan, the digital homepage, newsletters, social feeds, the sports landing page and the print section will draw from even more of the approximately 150 stories The Athletic produces each day chronicling leagues, teams and players across the United States and around the globe,” they wrote.

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Sports writers for The New York Times have won several Pulitzer Prizes over the years, including Arthur Daley in 1956 in the column, “Sports of the Times;” Walter Wellesley (Red) Smith in 1976 for commentary and Dave Anderson in 1981 for commentary.

The New York Times Co. announced early last year that it was buying The Athletic as part of a strategy to expand its audience of paying subscribers at a time when the newspaper print ads business continues to fade.

Unlike many local news outlets, the Times gained millions of subscribers during the presidency of Donald Trump and the COVID-19 pandemic. But it has been actively diversifying its coverage with lifestyle advice, games and recipes, to help counter a pullback from the politics-driven news traffic boom of 2020.

In May the Times reached a deal for a new contract with its newsroom union following more than two years of talks that included a 24-hour strike. The deal included salary increases, an agreement on hybrid work and other benefits.

-AP

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Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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Benin sports followers lament blackout of international sporting events 

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Sinatou Saka and Jean-Marc Adjovi Bocco, the duo can advice government to amortize the cost of television rights to relieve the citizens and Beninese generally.

Watching international sports events, including those of the national teams, has become a huge luxury, if not totally impossible in Benin Republic.

The blames are often put on government advisers who probably have not realised the importance of sports in the society.  

Fingers point at two personalities –  Sinatou Saka and Jean-Marc Adjovi Bocco. Saka was last year  appointed representative of the Beninese state on the board of directors of the joint audiovisual company. She is a journalist specializing in digital entrepreneurship.  

Bocco, a former professional footballer who played in the defence line of Benin national team is the technical adviser to the minister of sports.

Both were expected to use their good offices to advise government on issues of broadcast rights such that citizens could have access to international sports events, especially football.

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 They seem to have the views that watching international sports should remain a luxury owing to high cost of buying broadcast rights. The context in France seems to be the yardstick being employed while in the Beninese environment, sponsorship and advertisement is still very weak.

And even when the rights sellers revise the figures downwards, Sinatou Saka is believed to have turned down the offers. Peoples’ passion for sports is often overlooked. Bocco, too despite being a sports personality has not offered any assistance thus depriving millions of Beninese people of these rare moments of happiness around national teams and their athletes.

It is expected that the duo would advise the government to amortize the cost of television rights to relieve the citizens and Beninese generally.

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Edo State Governor, Top Dignitaries Storm Lagos For Sportsville Award –

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Edo State Governor, Top Dignitaries Storm Lagos For Sportsville Award -

The creme de la creme of sports personalities will gather in Lagos this evening for the 4th edition of Sportsville Special Recognition Award ceremony.

Topping the list of the dignitaries is the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki whose state is receiving award for the Best Sports Facilities Category, immediate past Sports Minister, Chief Sunday Dare, who is the Special Guest of Honour and ace TV anchor, Oseni Rufai of Arise Television.

The list also includes the Chairman/CEO of BRILA FM, Dr Larry Izamoje, Chairman, House Committee on Sports, Lagos State House of Assembly, Abiodun Orekoya, the Secretary General of the Nigeria Olympic Committee, Tunde Popoola, among others.

The organisers are excited that former Green Eagles Skipper and founder of Eagle 7 Sports Radio,  Segun Odegbami, has accepted to Chair the occasion.

“We’re really excited that top personalities like Dr Odegbami will be chairing the occasion. It tells you the credibility and quality of the award which is only in its 4th year,” Frank Ilaboya, the Chief Executive Officer of Sportsville, the organisers of the award said.

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The quality of  awardees in the different categories is another area Mr Ilaboya is fascinated with.

In the Sports Icon Category, we have the likes of former Governor of Abia State, Chief Orji Uzor Kalu, Chief Solomon Ogba, Rtn Victor Ochei and Otunba Segun Runsewe, OON.

 

The Sports Administrator of the Year has the NPFL Board Chairman, the quiet and soft speaking Gbenga Elegbeleye.

 

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Dr Uyi Akpata, the President of the Nigeria Cricket Federation, leads the likes of Sam Ocheho and Francis Orbih of Handball and Badminton respectively, Hajiya Zainab Saleh, Hauwa-Kulu Akinyemi and Women football pioneer, Elder Eddington Kuejubola .

 

The list also includes the Chairman, Anambra State Football Association, Chikelue Ileononysi.

 

The rave of the moment in sports radio broadcast goes to BRILA FM, while Kunle Solaja is named as Nigeria’s highly rated diarist!

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The newly-introduced creative category goes to Jenkins Alumona, the Chief Executive Officer of Flykite Promotions, just as ex-Olympian Daniel Igali wins in the Integrity Category

The Media Officer of the Year goes to Oladimeji Oshode of Remo Stars Football Club.

 

In the sports facilities category, Edo State came tops while Remo Sports Facilities Complex made the cut in the private sector category.

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Mark Igoche clinches the Achieve Award. “My special regards  and appreciation go to the Organising Committee led by the ebullient Adekunle Salami, the Deputy Editor and Group Sports Editor of the New Telegraph, for doing a good job, Mr Ilaboya picks up the story again

“I know how daunting it is to sieve few names among the tons of qualified personalities.”

Several arrays of top entertainers have been lined up for the ceremony billed for the prestigious Eko Club in Surulere, Lagos State.

 

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Nigeria’s Former Sports Minister, Dare Storms SV AWARDS With Powerful Team. –

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The list of those coming for this  Friday’s Sportsville Special Recognition Award is growing by the day.

The latest confirmation came last night from the immediate past Sports Minister, Hon Sunday Dare.

Chief Dare, who was honoured  yesterday in Abuja by Frontier Television with Service Award, confirmed his attendance when he spoke with Adekunle Salami, the Chairman of the Organising Committee.

“Count me in to grace the occasion. I will not only attend, but  I will be coming with a powerful delegation,” promises the man whose imprints as Sports Minister has continued to resonate in the sports circle.

Dare’s conformation has increased the number of guests expected at the event. As at this morning, over 100 guests have confirmed their seats for the award billed for the Blessing Hall of EKO CLUB, Surulere.

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Meanwhile, one of the nominees, Mrs Hauwa Kulu-Akinyemi, says she was surprised to be nominated among the awardees. “It came as a pleasant surprise, and I kept wondering what I have done to deserve this honour.

“I am humbled by this and I want to thank the organisers for picking me among the top women administrators in Nigeria.

“This will definitely push me to do more in the years ahead,” the soft spoken administrator added

This year’s edition is the 4th in the series with over 20 people listed for honour. The date is Friday, March 1st, 2024

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