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Relative States

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at The Wheeler Centre

Sam Lane and Tim Lane

In the countdown to the AFL Grand Final, our Relatives States series turns its attention to football writers.

Tim Lane has been a sports commentator and journalist for 40 years; his long-running column in the Sunday Age is essential weekly reading for committed AFL fans. Sam Lane, his daughter, is an award-winning sports writer and football commentator with the Seven Network.

In conversation with Melbourne broadcaster Alicia Sometimes, the pair will discuss where their influences, processes and interests converge. Why are there so many prominent families within the AFL empire?  What tensions emerge when there are two football writers in the same family – and what have they learned, as writers, from each other? More generally, what role does football play in the creative life of Melbourne as a city?




Portrait of Alicia Sometimes

Alicia Sometimes

Alicia Sometimes is an Australian writer and broadcaster. She has performed her spoken word and poetry at many venues, festivals and events around the world. Her poems have been in Best Australian Science Writing, Best Australian Poems, Overland, Southerly, Meanjin, the Age, ABC TV's Sunday Arts and more. She is a co-host of the Outer Sanctum podcast (ABC podcasts and radio). 

Portrait of Tim Lane

Tim Lane

Tim Lane has been broadcasting and writing about sport for more than 40 years. He spent three decades with the ABC covering football and international cricket, and worked at five Olympic Games. Today, he writes a weekly column for the Sunday Age and continues to broadcast AFL games and cricket on 3AW.

Portrait of Sam Lane

Sam Lane

An award winning journalist for the Age newspaper who specialises in AFL, Olympic and cycling, Samantha Lane joined Channel Seven’s AFL broadcast team in 2013.

The move followed her ten seasons with Channel 10’s much-loved AFL panel show, Before the Game, where Sam worked with some of Australia’s best known comics.
Now part of the top-rating Saturday night AFL coverage, Sam sits alongside Matthew Richardson, Cameron Ling, Luke Darcy, Mick Molloy and Brian Taylor on the weekly pre-match show. Through the match broadcasts she brings news, views and in- field interviews.

Sam is a two-time Quill award winner from the Melbourne Press Club. In 2010, she won the prize for best sport story of the year. In 2013, her work on the AFL and NRL doping scandals formed part of the Age’s group entry that won the best coverage of an issue or event. Sam’s work on the same topic – again in a team entry with Nick McKenzie, Richard Baker, Caroline Wilson and Jake Niall – won a Walkley award in 2013.

In 2012 Sam was made Olympics Reporter for the Age, and the London games were the second Olympics she has covered for Fairfax Media. She was also part of the Fairfax team that worked in Beijing, in 2008. After London, Sam was recognised twice at the Australian Sports Commission awards.

Relative States

Perhaps because talent runs in families, perhaps because we learn by example, perhaps because opposites don’t always attract in romance – there are often two people from the same household pursuing the same profession.

Sometimes these relationships are destructive (think of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes); sometimes they’re complicated (the AFL’s Ablett family). Sometimes they even appear to be  functional and mutually enriching (former ALP leader Kim Beazley was inspired by his father’s example to go into politics).

In our Relative States series, we’ll speak to high-profile pairs – some couples, some kin – about the intersection of their creative and professional worlds.


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