Slideshow: YEP snapper’s unbeatable catalogue of sports images

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HE’S famed for taking pictures of his beloved Leeds United in footballing action.

But legendary Yorkshire Evening Post photographer Steve Riding is anything but a one-club man when it comes to his work.

Jamie Peacock takes a selfie with Kevin Sinfield. PIC: Steve Riding

Jamie Peacock takes a selfie with Kevin Sinfield. PIC: Steve Riding

Steve’s unbeatable back catalogue includes many stunning images of the rugby stars of Leeds and Yorkshire’s cricketing heroes.

He has also become a familiar face on the sidelines at amateur sports grounds across the city during his 45-year career with the YEP.

Steve is out and about at local football and cricket fixtures every weekend, come rain or shine.

And life at grassroots level throws up more than its fair share of cracking pictures – as well as plenty of anecdotes.

“Local football and local cricket is the best free entertainment on the planet,” says Steve.

“Every week without fail something happens that gives you a good photo.

“And every week without fail there is something that makes for a great story in the pub on a Sunday night!”

Back in the glare of the big-match spotlight, one of Steve’s best-loved pictures shows the scene after Geoffrey Boycott reached his 100th first-class century in front of his home crowd at Headingley in 1977.

“I was waiting down by the old changing room in case he was out,” admits Steve. “But that spot also meant I could get him and the crowd with the scoreboard in the background.

“The atmosphere was electric – there were kids on the pitch, the police were there, the lot – and I think the picture captures that.

“Boycott asked me if he could use it in his autobiography and I was glad to say ‘yes’.”

Many of Steve’s finest photographic hours have been with Leeds Rhinos and, formerly, Leeds RL.

He was at Wembley in August when the Rhinos won the Tetley’s Challenge Cup and, after the match, found himself on the other side of the lens as he was snapped on the pitch in hot pursuit of victorious skipper Kevin Sinfield.

Steve was also allowed into the Leeds dressing room to grab a shot of Sinfield and team-mate Jamie Peacock celebrating their triumph with a ‘selfie’.

“I covered the Challenge Cup final when Leeds beat St Helens in 1978 and in those days I didn’t even look at my pictures until lunchtime the day after,” recalls the veteran snapper.

“Now, with the internet and social media, that photo of Sinfield and Peacock was out there before I’d even left the dressing room!

“Things are a lot more instant today, obviously, but getting the right picture is still at the heart of it all. That’ll never change.”

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