It was the end of an era last night as Network Ten newsreader Sandra Sully signed off from the Late News for the last time.
The former Canberra correspondent, who’d also had a stint as co-host of Good Morning Australia and the Sydney edition of the 5pm Ten News, took on the role of presenting the network’s 10.30pm bulletin in 1995 – following the departure of newsreader Anne Fulwood to the Seven Network. With Sully at the helm, the late night edition of Ten News fought off opposition from both the Seven and Nine networks, to the point that neither network now has a significant news coverage at that time of night.
Like with many newsreaders the job often put her in the position of covering some very significant news events. In 1997 she was on location at Thredbo when the sole survivor of a massive landslide, that claimed the lives of 18 others, was pulled from the wreckage after being trapped for three days.
Then, on the night of September 11, 2001, during the Late News, she was the first in Australia to break the news of a passenger plane flying into one of the World Trade Center towers in New York, and would continue to present news into the night as the tragic events unfolded.
In 2005 she had an exclusive interview with former Iraq hostage Douglas Wood.
As well as covering major news events, Sully has a lighter side – as host of the former quiz show Australia’s Brainiest, as co-host and interviewer on Network Ten’s annual Melbourne Cup coverage, hosting the annual Australian Of The Year presentation and not to forget her often lighthearted handover to Sports Tonight presenter Brad McEwen on the Late News.
Sandra Sully leaves the late-night timeslot to focus on her new role, anchoring the Sydney edition of Ten’s new 6.30pm bulletin which is due to launch early in 2011.
Ten has yet to announce who will formally take over the role of newsreader for the Late News bulletin.