Wigan Warriors get LJMU media grilling

Today’s sport stars are thrust into the media limelight like never before – some barely into adulthood.

Breaking into the first team requires players undergo daunting media duties as fans clamour to get up close and personal with their new heroes.

Super League Champions Wigan Warriors are getting ahead of the curve by teaming up with the Sport Journalism course at Liverpool John Moores University.

Seven players visited the Liverpool Screen School where they were put through their paces by our experienced Journalism and Sports Journalism lecturers on our state-of-the-art media facilities.

Among the talented contingent were Junior Nsemba and Zach Eckersley, both 20, who featured in Wigan's Challenge Cup Final success over Warrington Wolves at Wembley recently where Eckersley scored the opening try.     

All players who attended have signed professional contracts with the current Grand Final and World Club Challenge champions and are tipped for bright futures in the game with most having already debuted for Warriors’ first team.

Dave Randles, senior lecturer in sport journalism, said: “Breaking into the big time means increased media duties and is a key reason why the club brought the players to work with us. The more they understand it and feel competent, the better they will deal with the responsibility.”

The players were introduced to a variety of interviewing techniques, recorded their first ever podcast in the radio suite and took part in a green screen studio discussion as well as driving and reading an autocue for a sports bulletin.

Academy head coach John Duffy said: “It has been a really good experience for the players to work with the LJMU Sports Journalism staff to gain better insight to what it will be like for them working with and in the media.

“Running through various interview scenarios and being in front of a camera will stand them in good stead. Our partnership with LJMU Sports Journalism continues to grow with mutual benefits, which is great.”

Sports Journalism students have previously visited Wigan’s training ground to interview academy players and have covered Super League games from the DW Stadium press box.

BA Sports Journalism programme leader David Randles added: “It was great having Wigan Warriors with us for the afternoon. The players were first class in terms of how they engaged and coped with the scenarios put before them. It was good fun too.

“Media demands for elite athletes are growing by the year, with so many ways to produce and host content. Being media-savvy will help these young players in this environment. Hopefully one day they will be getting interviewed by LJMU Sports Journalism graduates!”

*Find out more about studying Journalism and Sports Journalism at Liverpool John Moores University


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