Cafe Chat: Sports Presenter Nathan Currie

Sports Presenter Nathan Currie in the Nine News studio: Photo: Martin Philbey

Self-confessed ‘sports nut,’ Nathan Currie, considers he’s landed a couple of dream jobs as sports presenter for Nine News Border North East and more recently, as regional presenter for Victorian AFL show, Off the Bench.

Kylie King caught up with him to chat about his background, including growing up as a Hawthorn fan in the heartland of ‘Cats’ territory, in Geelong.

Tell us about your background, including your time living in Albury Wodonga as a journalist?

I’m a Geelong boy, and after University I worked at Win News in Bendigo, then Albury, Ballarat and Nine News in Perth before moving back in February.

I have great memories of living in Albury, it was such a good time. I lived with two Border Mail journos in Young Street, and one of my closest mates is one of Nine’s cameramen up there.

I still come up to the Border on weekends, I was up last weekend – went to the O&M footy, and went up to Bright a couple of weeks ago.

Where does your passion for sport come from?

I come from a footy mad family that lives and breathes football. Although I grew up in Geelong I actually barrack for Hawthorn, my dad didn’t really give me a choice. My last few years of high school were 2007, 2008, 2009 (Geelong & Hawthorn traded premierships) which was an interesting time (laughs).

I suppose I have more of a respect and passion for sports since becoming a journalist and chatting to different to athletes. I spoke to a bunch of athletes in WA going to Rio for the Olympics, about what makes them want to do that, the lengths they go to, to achieve their goals.

Now that I’ve started doing long distance running in the past two years, I have more respect for what these athletes do and why they do it.

Although sport is your focus now, what is a memorable moment that has stood out in your journalism career so far?

The most worthwhile thing I’ve done as a journo is covering the Royal Commission into child abuse in Ballarat when I was a court reporter.

Being a Catholic boy myself and raised in a Catholic family, it was a really, really big eye opener for me in terms of the issues out there.  There were so many grown men coming up and thanking me for telling their story. A lot of them didn’t feel they got justice, so for them to talk to the media and get their story out there after all these years was a victory to them.

It was an interesting time and definitely a life changing experience for me – it made me realise as a journalist, I was making a difference in people’s lives.

The Nine News Border North East team, Nathan Currie, Jo Hall and Sonia Marinelli. Photo: Martin Philbey
The Nine News Border North East team, Nathan Currie, Jo Hall and Sonia Marinelli. Photo: Martin Philbey

How is the new Nine News Border North East bulletin going?

It’s going really well. From a sports point of view, we’re hearing from clubs that they’re enjoying the way we’re treating local sports like we treat the big leagues. In any given week in the AFL we’ll discuss what’s happening with the tribunal – who may or may not play, and it’s the same with the Ovens & Murray.

I think people are enjoying how we’re handling that. It’s great to see a match report, but we also try to cover what people are talking about during the week – who’s under an injury cloud and so on.

Me personally, I am feeling more confident each week, especially with the faith Nine is putting into me.

What’s it like working with ‘Nine News royalty’ Jo Hall?

I used to grow up and watch her reading the news, so it’s fantastic to now read the bulletin with her and consider her a friend. It still hasn’t sunk in.

Whenever I catch up with a friend they ask ‘what’s Jo like?’ – it hits me every time that I am actually doing this with Jo Hall.

She is a real professional and a shoulder to lean on, because it is live TV and whenever I haven’t done my best, she’ll sense it in me straight away and laugh it off or encourage me that I know what I’m doing and my mistake won’t be the end of the world.

You’re also a new member of a football program ‘Off The Bench’ – how are you settling in?

That one has been extraordinary. It airs after The Footy Show on Thursdays and is essentially a footy show hosted by Wayne Schwass and Liam Pickering dedicated to country footy in Victoria and Southern NSW.

I do a segment each week talking about various leagues and big match ups across the state.

It’s really exciting for me. Not having done this sort of television before, working with two really polished media performers, it’s extraordinary how much I’ve learnt in the past few months.

It’s been really cool to have a bit of fun and be light hearted. They like to hang it on me a bit considering I was not anywhere near as good a footballer as they were!

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