Monday 23 January 2017

Bill brought us Italia 90 - and so much more

Published 26/05/2015 | 02:30

One of Ireland's best-loved broadcasters, Bill O'Herlihy, has died aged 76. He was the anchor for decades on some of RTE's flagship soccer and sports coverage, and a major player in public relations. RTE said he died peacefully at home this morning (RTE/PA Wire)
One of Ireland's best-loved broadcasters, Bill O'Herlihy, has died aged 76. He was the anchor for decades on some of RTE's flagship soccer and sports coverage, and a major player in public relations. RTE said he died peacefully at home this morning (RTE/PA Wire)
Bill O'Herlihy presenting 'Munich '72' in 1972. One of Ireland's best-loved broadcasters, Bill O'Herlihy, has died aged 76 (RTE/PA Wire)

Many of us felt we knew Bill O'Herlihy because he had kept us company on so many great sporting adventures. He helped infuse the colour of many of Ireland's big sporting occasions into the tapestry of our daily lives.

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He came into many people's hearts and homes during the heady days of Italia 90, the Ireland soccer team's first and still best ever World Cup campaign. The consummately professional television anchor led a unique panel of experts in sporting chat which by turns informed, entertained and infuriated the Irish nation.

There was national dismay when he finally quit the RTÉ sports studios after the 2014 soccer World Cup. News of his sudden death yesterday dealt a blow of sadness to people the length and breadth of the land.

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