NOTHING MORE THAN A PIPE DREAM

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Written by Manisha Taylor

In this month’s column Dev Trehan shares his journey into the world of sports journalism. Someone who has always had a passion for sport and as a child was constantly being told off by his older sister for providing a running commentary during sports ranging from tennis to football; I think it’s fair to say that he had a natural aptitude and flair for analysing sport as a youngster, “when I was much younger I could picture myself as a football commentator”.

 

However, whilst growing up, a pathway into the industry took a different direction to the point where he dismissed getting into sports media as “nothing more than a pipe dream”. Dev worked in a number of different industries but never quite found his feet, “I never felt settled nor found the happiness I craved for in the workplace. Inside of me I knew I wanted more and was worth more.  That’s why I really admire people who do jobs that they hate, that live for weekend and can’t wait to finish work on a Friday so they can hit the pub and drink away the travails of grafting and doing a job they dislike”.

  

Whilst Dev was working at a London motorcycle dealership a charming, extremely polite gentleman walked in looking to buy a moped as a Christmas present for his family. At the time Dev did not anticipate how significant the gentleman would be to his future endeavours.

 

“I gave him the same level of high-quality personal service I give to everyone and upon agreeing a deal in principle, he gave me his card. I don’t know what possessed me to google him a few days later, but I did, and as I looked at the screen my jaw dropped – he was one of the UK’s most influential football agents. That was it – I was convinced meeting him was fate”.

 

With this revived enthusiasm and hope Dev began actively exploring ways of getting into the sports industry and that’s when he came across an MA in Sports Journalism. Remarkably, despite having no journalistic experience, the course director gave him the opportunity he craved based on the fact that he already had a University of London MA. Dev’s passion and determination was evident. He has travelled from Boston to Barcelona, Las Vegas to Liverpool and Indianapolis to Istanbul watching sport – this was his chance, his opportunity.

 

“That’s where my journey began and only halfway through the course did I have my first piece of work published. My advice to somebody wanting to get into the industry is to start writing a regular blog or start writing for a website. You really need an industry-standard NCTJ qualification, but in order to be accepted on a course you need a portfolio in order to demonstrate your commitment to the industry”.

 

“You must also stay focused and motivated and completely dedicate yourself to being the best you can be. I wake up every morning and tell myself I’ve achieved nothing yet, in order to keep myself hungry for even greater success”.  

 

Dev, like many journalists, works on a freelance basis. Currently he writes for the: Finchley Press, Get West London, Eastern Eye, The Mirror and Sky Sports in addition to a few websites. He was also a radio host and more recently narrated and co-produced a documentary on the British South Asian Soccer Story.

 

I was keen to know who Dev has had the pleasure of interviewing, and in response to his ‘most memorable moments’ he said, “It’s difficult particularly because I’ve had so many memorable moments including meeting and interviewing some of the biggest names in sport including Gary Lineker, Michael Schumacher, Ronnie O’Sullivan, Lennox Lewis, and Edgar Davids. One would be when the Spire Institute in Ohio used a piece I wrote for the Asian Football Awards programme on an emerging talent called Zidan Miah to form the basis of one of their promotional campaigns”.

 

Spire are one of only eight US Olympic training sites and work in partnership with the Michael Johnson Performance Centre who have participated in the development of St George’s Park – the state-of-the-art training centre for English football located in Burton-Upon-Trent.

 

“Another would be when I was approached by Derek Chisora’s management team requesting my assistance to increase the European Heavyweight Champion’s profile. I always joke with Derek when I see him that it is a great opportunity for him to have his photo taken with me because it‘s not every day the Finchley fighter gets a chance to have his photo taken with the Finchley writer!”

 

Chisora’s manager actually called Dev after a personal recommendation from Derek’s trainer, Don Charles. This certainly illustrates the impact of hard work and dedication. Dev has established a well-earned reputation as a man who can make things happen.

 

You can contact Dev via Twitter @InsideTrack_

Or visit my website which is launching soon at www.devtrehan.com

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