Eduan Roos was introduced to New Zealand sailing during a chance encounter with a fleet of Optimists on the Hauraki Gulf while covering the 2015 Cricket World Cup for South African media.
“I knew a few expats who were living in the East Coast Bays area and finally decided to drive out there on a rare day off and see for myself what the fuss was all about,” he says.
What was meant to be a quick detour days before that semi-final between the South Africans and the Black Caps at Eden Park turned into hours watching white specs bobbing on a canvas of blue and green.
“I remember thinking it was one of the most perfect things I've seen, and I think I fell in love with New Zealand then and there," Roos says.
“Hearing plenty of familiar accents on the beach didn’t hurt either!”
Two years later, he was standing in the same spot with wife Dominique and twin boys Jed and Zeke, having made the 12,000km trek from Johannesburg to settle in Browns Bay.
Roos this week takes over from Michael Brown as Yachting New Zealand’s Communications Manager, having previously worked as the sports editor for one of South Africa’s biggest national newspapers, a sports anchor for a daily TV news bulletin and as a sports presenter.
Most recently, Roos was a Deputy Head of News at the New Zealand Herald, after several years as the media organisation’s Head of Sport.
“The America’s Cup in Bermuda was the first major event I was involved in over here and while back then I didn’t know my gybes from my jib sheets, I was fascinated by the innovation, the drama, the athleticism - and the fact it was all playing out on the water,” he says.
“I gradually developed an understanding of the country's rich sailing history and an appreciation for the people who made it a global force, as well as those who keep the sport vibrant.”
Roos is most excited about sharing New Zealand's untold sailing stories – across all classes, regions and levels - in new and innovative ways.
"It's a great time to be involved in the sport - from the explosion in popularity of foiling in its many facets, the World Championships in The Hague later this year and the Paris Olympics in 2024; to the continued work in creating opportunities for sailors - especially youth and female sailors - connecting with schools, community groups and clubs, and championing environmental sustainability and advocacy.
"There has never been a wider range of platforms and a better chance to get the next generation hooked on sailing."
Roos can be contacted at email@example.com.