FIFA World Cup hosts Lucy Zelic and Craig Foster have responded to social media criticism over pronunciation of player names.
Foster noted Zelic had hosted some 14 games in 4 days, in only her second World Cup.
Addressing a culturally-important question, they referenced the great man, Les Murray, who instilled it in his younger presenters.
“Firstly because that’s what SBS is about. SBS is about respecting every single culture and of course the way you use the language is the most important way to show respect to someone — through the name,” Foster said.
“If you can’t get someone’s name right it means you have no regard, you haven’t done the work, you haven’t tried.
“Secondly, Les also did it out of respect for the game. The game broadly and also the players who play the game was always very important to him.”
Zelic fought back tears as she explained, “When I have had Colombians, for example, write to me and say, ‘I’ve been living in Australia for 37 years, constantly having my name mispronounced has always been a difficulty for me, to have it pronounced correctly is really quite touching’. That is why we do what we do at SBS.
“It’s always been about servicing the minority and about respecting the cultures we have in Australia.”