Many careers are shaped by an individual or a mentor, and my sports journalism career was no different. I grew up watching Grandstand on the BBC and thought Des Lynam was brilliant. I was also inspired by Helen Rollason, particularly because female sports journalists and presenters were such a rarity back then.
I was lucky enough to meet Giles Squire, who was the head of Metro FM, a radio station in Newcastle, when I was 19. He was very supportive and said: “When you come to university, come and see me and we’ll look into training you up to read the news.” I waited about three days before ringing him and, true to his word, I was being paid to read the news by the end of the term. By the time I graduated, I had my own show.
Life as a sports journalist
There is no regular routine. Saturdays are generally the most consistent day, as I host Final Score, rugby or athletics depending on the time of year. This means that Fridays are usually travel or preparation days and Sundays, if I’m abroad, are coming home days. As for Monday