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About Us

PETER THOMSON has worked as a sports journalist on newspapers in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and the United Kingdom – including The Courier-Mail, Brisbane, The Evening Post, Wellington, The Star, Johannesburg, and The Daily Telegraph, London. He is the creator of Sportsword, Australia’s longest-running newspaper sports crossword (first published 1983), which currently appears in Brisbane’s Sunday Mail.

DAVID WHITE, a long-time journalist and self-confessed sports nut, is currently employed as a senior sub-editor at the Northern Territory News in Darwin. He spent the bulk of his early career on regional newspapers, also working in radio, before joining Brisbane’s Courier-Mail — where his tipping feats across all codes, while producing its football liftout, are legendary.

History

A tattered 1980 English club rugby match program represents the unlikely inspiration behind Sportsword.

The match, as Sportsword creator Peter Thomson recalls, was a John Player Cup tie between Gloucester and London club Rosslyn Park, at Gloucester’s Kingsholm ground.

For the New Zealand-born, Queensland-based journalist, then working as a sports writer/sub-editor for London’s Daily Telegraph, the event marked something of an epiphany — thanks to the unnamed contributor whose rugby crossword graced a page of that Gloucester match program.

“I’d always enjoyed having a crack at sports crosswords, without ever giving much thought to how they came together or whether I might be capable of compiling them myself,’’ Peter says.

“But seeing the crossword in that Gloucester rugby program really fired my imagination and somehow convinced me to pursue the possibilities when I eventually returned to Brisbane.”

Sportsword was first published in Brisbane’s now-defunct Daily Sun newspaper in 1983. It became a regular feature in Brisbane’s Sunday Mail in 1989 and, apart from a couple of years in its sister paper, The Courier-Mail, it continues to appear in what is one of Australia’s largest-circulation newspapers.

Peter has also compiled sport-specific crosswords (cricket, rugby union, rugby league, horse racing and motor racing) for various publications; self-published a book of sports crosswords; and produced sports crosswords on beer coasters for the then Queensland-based Power Brewing Company.

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