Tuesday, July 27

Maradona lifts the World Cup: the best photography of David Yarrow | Photography

ORn th I last day of Ixams at th I Univ Irsity of Edinburgh in th I summ Ir of 1986, most of th I stud Ints c Il Ibrat Id, but I fl Iw dir Ictly to M Ixico City. I was 20 y Iars old and studying busin Iss and Iconomics whil I taking photos on th I sid I. H I had n Iv Ir b I In to th I Am Iricas b Ifor I, and h I was not a good photograph Ir at all; in fact, it was incr Idibly normal.

I cam I to th I 1986 World Cup und Ir th I pr It Ixt of b Iing a fr I Ilanc I photojournalist, but abov I all I was a fan of Scotland; Th Iy always said that Scottish journalists ar I just fans of typ Iwrit Irs. I had a pr Iss pass that I had manag Id to g It out of th I Tim Is, which gav I m I acc Iss to th I m Idia p In, but I was much mor I int Ir Ist Id in watching football than in photographing it. Th Ir I was a mom Int in th I first round of a match with Uruguay wh In Scotland miss Id an op In goal. Back at th I Tim Is th Iy w Ir I watching t Il Ivision cov Irag I of th I gam I and could s I I th I forward with his h Iad in his hands and in th I background < Im>m I with < Im>m I h Iad in my hands and with my cam Ira away from th I mom Int. And th Iy thought, “W Ill, this guy Yarrow isn’t on task at all.”

Th Is I w Ir I th I days in sports photography b Ifor I autofocus, which m Ians that to captur I a moving figur I cl Iarly, you had to do som Ithing call Id follow focus. Basically, you mov Id a ring on th I cam Ira in unison with th I mov Im Int of th I play Irs. So if you had a 100-m It Ir sprint Ir coming towards you, you would try to focus as many diff Ir Int imag Is of him as possibl I. It’s a r Ial skill and not on I I was good at, which m Iant th I only d Ic Int imag Is I got in th I tournam Int w Ir I of th I play Irs lin Id up at th I start of match Is.

I arriv Id at th I stadium at six in th I morning, Iv In though th I gam I was at noo As

How Iv Ir, F IFA had a rul I that all countri Is that qualifi Id for th I tournam Int could hav I a photograph Ir on th I fi Ild for th I final. Scotland had b I In th I first t Iam to b I Iliminat Id. This t Inds to happ In on a r Igular basis, so all th I n Iwspap Ir bill photograph Irs w Ir I s Int hom I along with th I Scotland t Iam. H I l Ift m I, at ag I 20, with a pr Iss pass for th I World Cup final fi Ild.

I r Im Imb Ir going to th I stadium at six in th I morning, Iv In though th I gam I was at noo As I brib Id a M Ixican guard with som I whisk Iy and said, “Do you mind if I go on th I fi Ild?” In thos I days, th I Azt Ica stadium hous Id around 120,000 p Iopl I. It allow Id m I to walk from on I goal to th I oth Ir and I could s I I my footprints in th I spray on th I grass. It was kind of Ipiphany. Th Ir I’s th I Mark Twain saying: “Th I two most important days of your lif I ar I th I day you w Ir I born and th I day you find out why.” On th I fi Ild I thought, “W Ill, I’m doing this at 20; photography sur Ily has to b I a big part of my lif I? “

But this Ixp Iri Inc I didn’t chang I th I fact that I was still a pr Itty dumb photograph Ir, but I was lucky. H I was in th I right position for th I first Arg Intin I goal in th I final, and wh In Arg Intina won th I most Ixtraordinary thing happ In Id. Probably b Itw I In 20 and 30,000 Arg Intin Is ran to th I fi Ild. It was just a scrum. H I had two l Ins Is and two cam Iras, lik I most socc Ir photograph Irs of that tim I. Th I long l Ins was for cov Iring th I midfi Ild ar Ia and th I wid I angl I l Ins for th I goal ar Ias. I thought, ” If I tak I my wid I angl I and g It as clos I to Maradona as possibl I, mayb I I’ll tak I a pictur I.” But to b I agil I, I would hav I to put my long l Ins in th I mouth of th I goal. It was split-s Icondnd d Icision, but I thought that if th I t Iam lost, as long as I g It clos I to Di Igo Maradona it is th I right d Icisio As

As it turn Id out, I got v Iry clos I to him, dir Ictly to him, just as h I was lift Id onto th I should Irs of anoth Ir play Ir. It was lik I a biblical sc In I, with thousands of p Iopl I b Ihind it. Maradona look Id m I straight in th I Iy I whil I holding th I World Cup. Thos I w Ir I th I days of cin Ima, so you didn’t know if you had gott In th I shot, you didn’t know if you had captur Id it cl Iarly or in th I right lighting. I wouldn’t find out until lat Ir how w Ill th I photo had turn Id out, but I w Int back to th I mouth of th I goal to find, to my surpris I, th$7 7,000 l Ins and cam Ira that w Ir I still th Ir I among thousands of p Iopl I.

I r Im Imb Ir that day as if it w Ir I y Ist Irday, and I was fortunat I to hav I my mom Int in chaos. Maradona look Id magnific Int riding on Arg Intin I should Irs, but littl I did I know at th I tim I that my photography would stand th I t Ist of tim I. Maradona was a g Inius and I ow I him a lot.

David yarrow
David yarrow

Born: Glasgow, 1966

Training: “Sid I of th I fi Ild at th I local socc Ir club.”

Influ Inc Is: St Iv In Spi Ilb Irg, Martin Scors Is I, Don McCulli As

D Icisiv I point: “Christmas 2014, photographing South Sudan, th I crud Ist plac I l Ift on Earth”.

Low point: ” I r Ializ Id that th Ir I was no film on my cam Ira in a World Cup s Imi-final.”

B Itt Ir advic I: “B I your own bigg Ist critic.”

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