5 months ago

Veteran television presenter Peter Purves today blasted Question of Sport as ‘unwatchable’ after the replaced its host Sue Barker with , saying the change was a ‘great shame’.

Former Blue Peter host Purves, 83 – who was himself dropped from ‘s coverage of Crufts in 2019 after 41 years – has lamented the exit of Barker, 66, and refferal gacor arrival of McGuiness, 48, on the BBC quiz show.

Purves also told ITV’s today that it was a ‘terrible decision’ by the BBC last week to axe the Radio 2 afternoon show fronted by Steve Wright, 67, who will be replaced by Radio 1’s Scott Mills, 49.

The BBC announced in September 2020 that former professional tennis player Barker would be leaving Question of Sport after 24 years, with team captains Matt Dawson, 49, and Phil Tufnell, 56, also departing.

Barker took over as presenter in 1997 from David Coleman – who died aged 87 in 2013 – but she was replaced in July 2021 by Top Gear presenter McGuinness, along with new team captains Sam Quek, 33, and Ugo Monye, 39.

Veteran television presenter Peter Purves speaks out about ‘ageism’ at the BBC while being interviewed on ITV this morning

Paddy McGuinness (centre) took over on Question of Sport last year with new team captains Sam Quek (left) and Ugo Monye

McGuinness had appeared as a panellist on a number of occasions before taking over as Question of Sport host last year

Sue Barker on Centre Court during day seven of the Wimbledon Championships in South West London yesterday

Sue Barker left Question of Sport after 24 years, with team captains Matt Dawson (left) and Phil Tufnell (right) also departing

And Purves said today: ‘Often changes made for a reason doesn’t seem to work. You’ve got to look at the lovely Sue Barker, she has been wonderful on the tennis and she apparently has said that she is standing down so we won’t be seeing her there.But it happened when she left Question of Sport – look what happened there. 

‘I mean I find the programme unwatchable now, and I think it’s a great shame. People get used to a certain thing and they like the style, and because people get older I don’t think they should just be dropped like that – maybe it should be their own decision.’

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