Iconic TV show returns as a podcast

SportsCafe, a TV show of the 1990’s and early 2000’s is making a return by jumping on the podcast bandwagon.

Running on the iHeartRadio network, the Sportscafe-ish podcast will be hosted by three of the original crew: former All Blacks and Warriors player Marc Ellis, comedian Leigh Hart and journalist, TV presenter and producer Ric Salizzo, who is back in the country following a stint at running a professional rugby team in New York.

Salizzo is pleased to be able to give fans a second helping of SportsCafe which last screened a full season in 2008, followed by three exclusive online episodes in 2011.

Listeners can expect discussions on current sporting issues, surprise guest appearances, and nostalgic reflections on moments from the original SportsCafe show. 

“I’ve always been fascinated by the changing habits of how audiences consume content. When we started SportsCafe, Sky Sport only had 70,000 subscribers so it was a risk trying to start a show there. I love how in 2024 creators can go directly to their audience through podcasts, social media, and YouTube. It’s an exciting time to make content, so I thought, why not get back into it? And I knew a couple of people,” says Salizzo.

“I’ve been really impressed with the way NZME has embraced the changing digital space. I did my work experience at the NZ Herald in 1981, and it’s come a long way from sending stories and multiple carbon copies to the subs by pneumatic tubes. With the work NZME has done developing great podcasts like Between Two Beers, I thought they would be great to partner with to make sure we had a chance to build a strong audience with Sportscafe-ish.”

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