A FORMER Epworth Bells reporter is rubbing shoulders with sporting stars in the Far East after landing a top job fronting Singapore TV’s football coverage.
Richard Lenton, 38, started his career as a cub reporter at the paper in 1998 and last year followed his dream by relocating to Singapore to become the face of Premier League football on Mio TV.
And after just over a year in the job, in which he regularly interviews top stars such as former England players Robbie Fowler and Steve McManaman, he was nominated for Best Sports Presenter at the 2012 Asian TV Awards in December.
Richard, originally from High Street, Belton, spoke of his disappointment at missing out on the prize, but added he was still proud to have made the six-person shortlist from several hundred nominees.
He said: “Some people say that it’s the taking part that counts, but that’s nonsense - I really wanted to win.
“Having said that, it was an honour to make the shortlist and to be recognised for doing a decent job. It’s the first time I’ve ever been to an awards ceremony - I think the last individual award I won was player of the year for Belton Under 16s.”
Richard moved to Singapore in July 2011 with girlfriend Ellen, 34, after a year covering sport for ESPN.
He impressed Mio TV bosses with his work on a show called Talk of the Terrace, during which he interviewed celebrities including 100 metre world record holder Usain Bolt, boxer Amir Khan and singer Liam Gallagher.
He now presents live programmes, Football Face Off and Tiger, It’s Your Shout, which are two of the most watched shows outside of live football matches.
Richard said he has adapted very quickly to his new home.
“Singapore is ‘Asia Lite’, very westernised - I even play for a football team called British Hotspurs. We live in a condo with swimming pools, tennis courts, a golf area and a gym - it’s amazing.”
He added that he manages to keep in touch with his friends and parents, Alan and Marion, back in the Isle, but added he misses the wintry festive feel of the UK.
He said: “I’ve genuinely never been homesick because the world is a much smaller place now thanks to Facebook, Skype, etc. But I really wish that I had been back in the Isle for Christmas.”