Jake Niall

Jake Niall

Jake Niall is a senior sports writer at 'The Age' specialising mainly in coverage of the AFL. He writes a weekly column for 'The Sunday Age' and has been on staff with 'The Age' or 'Sunday Age' since 1995. Jake, who combines original news with commentary, match-based writing, features and analysis, has won a number of awards, including the Alf Brown award for the best performer in AFL media in 2012, the Melbourne Press Club's 2007 Quill award for best sports story in any medium and a Walkley award, shared with colleagues Richard Baker, Nick McKenzie, Caroline Wilson and John Silvester, for best coverage of a major issue (Essendon scandal) in 2013.

Crowley case held up by Essendon tribunal

Jake Niall and Samantha Lane While the verdict for the 2012 Essendon-ASADA case will be handed down on March 31, the parties are prepared for the prospect that players might not receive penalties until after round one if they...

Netball pays Channel Ten to televise games in ground-breaking deal

Vixens.

Jake Niall In a ground-breaking deal for sports broadcasting, Channel Ten has effectively been paid – by Netball Australia's sponsors – to put broadcasts of the sport on free-to-air television.

Andy Murray's second serve: slower than Serena Williams', and a problem

Missile gap: Andy Murray.

Jake Niall In explaining why Andy Murray couldn't match Novak Djokovic, consider not only his "distracted" state of mind, but this astonishing truth.

Australian Open: Protesters draw attention to detainees on Manus Island

Protesters unfurl a banner during the men's final, drawing attention to the plight of refugees on Manus Island.

Jake Niall Protesters managed to get on centre court while unfurling a pro-refugee banner during the men's final of the Australian Open.

Australian Open: Two old adversaries come together for a final clash of titans

Another final: Novak Djokovic pumps his fist in exhilaration after defeating Stan Wawrinka.

Jake Niall Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic were born a week apart in May 1987 and, as Djokovic noted, they have known each since they were kicking around courts at 11 or 12.

Amelie Mauresmo and Andy Murray breaking new, overdue ground

Illustration: Mick Connolly

Jake Niall Don’t point the finger at his female coach if Andy Murray doesn’t win the Open.

Australian Open: Novak Djokovic defeats Stan Wawrinka in five-setter to enter final

Novak Djokovic celebrates after defeating Stan Wawrinka.

Jake Niall Novak Djokovic was again extended by the troublesome Stan Wawrinka, but this time he survived the insurrection to reach his fifth Australian Open final.

Wawrinka v Djokovic: An epic third serve of Stanimal and the Djoker

Familiar territory:

Jake Niall In 2005, 17-year-old prodigy Novak Djokovic played a 19-year-old Swiss kid called Stan Wawrinka in the second round of qualifying for the Australian Open.

Berdych, a blank Czech, follows the Murray path

Happiness is beating Rafael Nadal in straight sets is what Tomas Berdych seems to be trying to convey.

Jake Niall Tomas Berdych isn't simply facing off against Andy Murray for a berth in the Australian Open final. Berdych is tracing Murray's steps, following the Murray template.

Nobody, not even Nadal, beats Berdych 18 times in a row

Tomas Berdych consoles Rafael Nadal after defeating the Spaniard in straight sets.

Jake Niall Rafael Nadal had suggested he couldn't win the tournament, that he was ill-prepared, and on that score, he was right.

Australian Open: Novak Djokovic shows why he is the favourite

Novak Djokovic stretches for a backhand during his third-round match against Fernando Verdasco.

Jake Niall In an Australian Open in which Roger Federer is done and Rafael Nadal underdone, Novak Djokovic has confirmed his position at the top of the field.

Why AFL clubs have stop paying a million

Jake Niall From what one has gathered, Gary Ablett and Tom Scully, the first signings of the AFL's expansion clubs, were the only AFL footballers who were paid more than a million dollars in 2014.

Australian Open: Major shock as Roger Federer falls in four sets

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 23:  Roger Federer of Switzerland reacts in his third round match against Andreas Seppi of Italy during day five of the 2015 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 23, 2015 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Patrick Scala/Getty Images)

Jake Niall Roger Federer had instinctively felt that Andreas Seppi wasn’t going to be one of those centre court strolls.

Suspended past and present Essendon players may need AFL approval to play NAB Cup

Jake Niall Provisionally suspended current and ex-Essendon players appear likely to require AFL Commission permission if they wish to play in the NAB Cup, with the ASADA hearing set to drag on into mid-February...

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Australian Open: Fab Four still count where it matters, with the bookies

Odds on: Novak Djokovic is favourite to win this year's Australian Open title.

Jake Niall Last year, men's tennis entered unfamiliar, unpredictable terrain, which in turn invites an intriguing question - whether this men's Australian Open title will be won by the Four or "the field".

Australian Open 2015: Nick Kyrgios wins through to third round

In good Nick: Australian Nick Kyrgios after beating Ivo Karlovic.

Jake Niall If you asked Tennis Australia to nominate a fourth round encounter that would fill both the centre court and guarantee millions of eyeballs, it would be a match-up between Nick Kyrgios and Roger...

Australian Open 2015: Australian guaranteed in last 16 – if Bernard Tomic wins

Bernard Tomic works up a sweat during a practice session on Tuesday.

Jake Niall If Bernard Tomic manages to defeat steady German Philipp Kohlschreiber on Wednesday, then Australian tennis will be assured of a player in the last 16 of the men's event – a stage last reached...

Tennis legends urge Kyrgios to listen and learn

Nick Kyrgios.

Linda Pearce and Jake Niall Pat Rafter is full of praise for the attitude of Thanasi Kokkinakis, but is no longer prepared to give behavioural advice to the other of Australia's talented tennis teens, Nick Kyrgios, until there...

Golden generation of tennis greats agree it's wide open

 Serena Williams of the USA looks ahead during a practice session ahead of the 2015 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 17, 2015 in Melbourne, Australia.

Jake Niall Rafa doesn't like his chances. Roger, playing in his 16th Australian Open, is more optimistic. Serena says she wants it "more than anyone else". Our Samantha says she "knows what I want to do here".

The pitch is in – why the Indian series failed to excite

Jake Niall

Jake Niall Crowds were robust. Ratings were up. Steve Smith and Virat Kohli were stupendous. But the series we have just endured between Australia and India still tasted like a bottle of Diet Coke that's been...

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