Monday, 3 August 2009

No Payne, his gain

Updated 5/8/09

Sometimes, being pink-slipped by Sun Media is a blessing in disguise.

It was for Steve Payne, a longtime Toronto Sun reporter and company man who was shown the door a couple of years ago.

During his Sun years, Payne always let it be known his passions included the Sun and soccer. When he got the boot from the former, he focused on the latter.

Today, Payne and his wife, Deb, are packing their bags in preparation for an Aug. 26 departure for Australia, where Steve has landed a four-year contract as the technical director and game development manager for Tasmania.

"It will be my responsibility to introduce the new Football Federation Australia national curriculum into Tazmania, run workshops, courses and seminars for coaches, coach players, scour the state for young talent and coach one or more of the state teams," Payne says in an e-mail."

Payne noted that the Australians, already ranked 16 in the world, are "very serious about improving and are bidding to host the World Cup in 2018 or 2022."

The Sun's loss, Australia's gain. All the best, Steve.

Meanwhile, Ian Harvey, a fellow soccer player and former Sun colleague, says a sendoff for Steve is being organized for Aug. 20 or 21.

Ian can be reached at

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