Beth Fisher, ITV Wales Sports Reporter has been nominated as this month’s ‘Seren Y Mis / Star of the Month’ for her continuous support of players and the league.
O: How does it feel to be nominated as this month’s ‘Seren y Mis/Star of the month’?
B: It’s a complete surprise if I’m honest! Everything I try and do for this job is to make it easier for everyone coming through, whether female’s or people from different backgrounds. I feel like I’m simply just doing my job and it’s really a privilege to be nominated.
O: Tell us a bit about your career, starting off with your first love, hockey...
B: Well hockey, goodness! It feels like it was so long ago that I played. It was my first love. I competed for about 15 years and it took me places I never would have gone to and, more importantly, I made friends for life and the skills it taught me, on and off the pitch, have been invaluable. More to the point I just had an amazing time, and of course, it’s an absolute privilege and honour to represent your country and I feel lucky to have sang the anthem on many occasions - it doesn’t get better than that!
O: How did you find the transition from being on the pitch playing to reporting?
B: In all honesty, reporting probably saved me a little bit, because when I finished hockey I didn’t really know who I was. For so many years you're known as ‘Beth the hockey player’ and that’s kind of what your main focus is, so reporting just kind of replaced that. Starting from the very beginning again in the later stages of my 30’s was at times quite challenging because obviously you’re having to learn everything from scratch and as people probably appreciate, it’s one of those industries where you’ve just got to get things wrong to learn - plus being a sports woman, you’re never satisfied with your performance! So, I guess so many things are the same with being on the pitch and reporting but equally I have a huge love for them both.
O: What has been your favourite memory from your career so far?
B: It has to be really when I reported for BBC Radio Wales. I was the first woman to commentate on football for them, so that was an incredible honour! Reporting for ITV Wales on TV has been a huge journey and privilege. The first ever TV report I did on the 6 o’clock news will live with me forever, mainly because I was nervous as hell and that feeling of probably being on air for the first time was extraordinary.
O: How proud do you feel to be a Stonewall sport champion? We love to see support for the LGBTQ+ community within sports but we know there’s still a way to go.
B: My campaigning and being ambassadors for various LGBT+ charities and organisations and my work I do on TV, for me, are really linked. One of the reasons why I got into this industry was to be a visible role model for young girls and boys who may feel a bit different to other people, whether that’s to do with the way they dress or with their sexuality and such. I feel very proud to have the platform I do, even though it’s a very small one, to be able to help others be more comfortable with who they are and, ultimately, that’s all I want people to be is comfortable and happy with who they are.
O: What would you say to a Woman looking to get into a job in sport media?
B: Come and join us! Come on, there’s not enough of us! So please hurry up, because it’s not great sometimes being the only woman in a press room. There are so many opportunities and I think equally don’t be scared or put off by the lack of females you see in sport media. Obviously there’s the big names like Gabby Logan and Clare Balding and so on, but we need more women. Not just women - but women from diverse backgrounds and heritages to be part of this journey because we can’t just be the same type of woman either. So be brave, be bold! There’s definitely a few of us already doing it who will welcome you and help you, so don’t be afraid, be proud of what you represent and just blinking do it!