Tag Archive for 'Sport'

Usman Khawaja

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As 24 year old Pakistan born Usman Khawaja makes his test cricket debut for Australia today, I thought it would be fitting to post a couple of shots I took of him for The Sunday Telegraph a couple of months ago.
Uzzie as he is known to his team mates, comes into the Australian cricket team at a time when the team has been playing pretty poorly, losing the Ashes series to England after being disgraced in the fourth test in Melbourne. Khawaja comes in at the number three spot in the batting order to replace the injured captain Ricky Ponting, but the feeling is he is more than just a stand-in, hence why there was media interest in him months ago. He has been scoring runs for NSW and playing in top form, and what also makes Khawaja a great news story is that he is the first non European to pull on the baggy green cap for Australia – he was born in Pakistan and moved to Australia at age three. Cricket fans have been longing for a fresh young hope to put the spark back into a lackluster team, and it looks like Khawaja is the man for the role.
The Ashes have been lost and the fifth test in Sydney which began today won’t change the outcome, but to the players this fifth test means everything, and for the fans packing the Sydney Cricket Ground today, it seems as though Khawaja means everything to them – he walked on to the ground, making his debut for Australia to deafening cheers from the fans.
He had me two months ago when I met him in a cafe at the SCG, he was wearing a Jimi Hendrix t-shirt and leather jacket – definitely the future of Australian cricket! More shots after the cut. Continue reading

NRL Grand Final

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In early October I was lucky enough to be given the job of shooting the NRL Grand Final for Australian Associated Press (AAP). I haven’t shot a great deal of rugby league, so getting a chance to shoot the biggest game of the year, and getting paid to do so, was something I feel very fortunate to have been able to experience.
If anyone remembers the day, it was pouring rain. Not the kind of conditions you would hope for when covering an event of this size-and of course being exposed to the elements for 80 minutes makes for a soggy night indeed.
I did, however turn up prepared for the worst weather and had all my gear covered up with rain covers, and in the end I think the pouring rain made for some great pictures. Rain, after all, looks pretty incredible when it’s lit up by those massive stadium lights.
I was there to cover the game with AAP’s chief photographer Dean Lewins, and I thank him for showing me the ropes prior to the big show!
Below the cut is a selection of some of the images I filed from the game. Continue reading

Winter Olympics wrap up

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I’m back home from Vancouver and finally have had a decent sleep after what was easily one of the best experiences of my time so far with a camera. I shot 18,175 photos in the three weeks I spent in Vancouver and really wished I had used the pedometer that was in our media kit “goodies bag”, because I reckon the amount of walking I did would be right up there. I also spent the equivalent of about three whole days on buses, I even fell asleep with a half full cup of coffee in my hand on one bus trip. I ate dinner on only four occasions during the games and only once at a reasonable hour prior to midnight. I met and worked alongside some incredible photographer’s while at the games and it was a humbling experience to be around such great sports photographers, all of whom were at the same time some of the friendliest people I’ve ever met, who included Robert Beck of Sports Illustrated, David G McIntyre, Jon Gaede, Erich Schlegal, Klaas Jan van der Weij, Peter Blakeman, Jeff Crow, Delly Carr, and Courtney Crow, to name a few. (and not forgetting my mates Sean Radich and Jake McBride).
Click below for more words and a selection of images from the second week of the games
Continue reading

Winter Olympics Part 2

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Ok so I’m starting to catch up here. Got about six hours sleep last night and I feel like a new person. There are some great events coming up in the next few days and there have been some brilliant moments in the past few. I’m still behind a bit with my posts, but I will get there!
I have also been photo blogging daily for Mountainwatch.com along with fellow Aussie photographer Jake McBride and you can check it out here. In this post are images of Dale Begg-Smith’s silver medal at the moguls and the men’s and women’s snowboardcross along with some shots from the halfpipe training. Continue reading

Nikon D3 and 200-400mm f4 VR for a weekend


A couple of weekends ago Nikon Professional Services were kind enough to lend me a Nikon D3 and the 200-400mm f4 VR zoom lens to play around with.
It was a last minute thing and so I quickly tried to arrange to shoot as much as possible in the two days I had this amazing set up.
In the one weekend I shot a game of Rugby league, Tony Hawk demoing at Monster skatepark, a NSW Premier League Soccer match that evening and the following day I shot a handfull of overs in the final match of the Women’s World Cup Cricket, and then another Soccer game that night. I definitely put the camera to the test, especially the high ISO capabilities. Most small club fields in Sydney have terrible lighting and I was shooting at ISO 6400 at f4, and shocked at how well the camera not only handled the noise at that ISO but also how well the camera was able to focus the long lens in such crappy light and keep up. On my D2x when shooting sports like soccer, the keeper rate is probably about 2-3 sharp shots in a burst of 10. The D3 was 9-10 tack sharp in a burst of 10! Seriously worth every cent.The other thing worth noting is how sharp this lens is for a zoom! You would think the images came from a prime 2.8.
It has been pretty hard to go back to the old cameras after using the D3.
Time to sell everything I own!!
lot’s more shots after the cut.
. Continue reading

Basketball


SO my flatmate, Chris plays Basketball in a bit of a low key local comp and i figured I’d tag along last night to see if I could get a couple of shots! I’ve never shot Basketball before and found there were more than a couple of hurdles! More shots and details after the jump. I knew the first issue would be the amount of light in the gymnasium. It is held at a local school so I knew right away the lighting would be lacking. The other problem was the amount of space, there was pretty much two metres between the sidelines and the brick walls of the building, not a lot of room to move around the court. The bricks proved to be a bit distracting too, although one can’t always hope for a full stadium with a big out of focus crowd to “clean” up the background!

All these shots were at 2000 ISO! It’s not pretty, but even at such a high ISO i couldn’t get a fast enough shutter speed to control the action. 8 out of 10 shots had motion blur. !/125th sec was the best i could do wide open @f2.8…

It goes without saying that either I need a D3 or just forget about trying in such lighting conditions.
One other major thing I learned about the limitations of my equipment last night was the old Nikkor 80-200 2.8D series lens really lacks the auto focus performance required for such fast moving/erratic sports.
This was something I already kind of knew, but figured it might work out ok with the odd shot dropped due to the AF not being able to keep up with the frame rate on the camera. It’s funny, because this lens has been my most used and abused lens for all my snow and other action sports work, I guess they don’t require much focus tracking though!