Andrew Johnston - new team member at The Riv

October 11, 2017

THE Spirit of Tasmania is a lovely idea — in theory. But when you’re actually trying to sleep while going through swells, it’s not anywhere near as nice.

None the less, that was me only a few days ago, making a move from Tasmania to Echuca-Moama to take up a role as a sports journalist.

My name is Andrew Johnston, though I usually go by AJ, and I am ecstatic to be joining the team here at the Riverine Herald.

Before coming to Echuca-Moama, I graduated from the University of Tasmania with a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Journalism.

As well as this, I worked at ABC Hobart for the last four years in news operations. I also had the opportunity to do some work experience with Cricket Tasmania and work as a part time writer for AFL Tasmania, covering the Tasmanian State League.

Sport has been my passion for my entire life. Unfortunately, the gods did not grace me with any ability to play. As a result, I put my knowledge towards writing about the games I love.

Tasmania is a strange place when it comes to sport. We obviously have no AFL team, and the closest we get is my beloved Hawthorn Football Club playing four games in my home town of Launceston every year.

We also have our state cricket team, who after a few years of success, are rapidly falling back into their traditional role of ‘‘cellar dwellers.’’

But we did get to see some amazing sporting events. Daniel Geale fighting Anthony Mundine for one and recently Tassie’s Luke Jackson all but earning himself a WBO Featherweight title shot.

Tasmania has produced some of the best athletes in many sports in this country. Names like Ricky Ponting, former Kookaburra Matthew Wells, cyclist Richie Porte, V8 driver Marcus Ambrose, and five AFL Hall of Fame legends.

But when you want to be a journalist, Tasmania is not necessarily the place to be. And that’s why I am incredibly excited to be here in Echuca-Moama.

For me personally, Aussie Rules will always be my number one love, and I have devoted a great deal of my life to my beloved Hawks.

As well as this, I am passionate about baseball (my Boston Red Sox are currently in the MLB playoffs and I’m slightly stressed about it) as well as cricket, rugby league, gridiron and basketball.

While I have some previous experience, this is my first real journalist job, so I might take a while to get it right.

In that time, I would love nothing more than to meet the people of this wonderful community, and get to know you all, and above all, talk about sport.

If you have a story to tell, I can guarantee you, I want to hear it.

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