Cool Marian Finucane heaps praise on 'brilliant' Claire Byrne
IF Marian Finucane is feeling under pressure from the increasingly popular Claire Byrne, she wasn't showing it yesterday.
Ms Byrne (35) has been widely praised since she started on RTE's flagship 'Morning Ireland' radio show.
Ms Byrne, who joined RTE from Newstalk, also got good reviews after filling in for Ms Finucane last month and last summer.
Ms Finucane (61), who received more than €500,000 in fees from RTE in 2009, yesterday said she did not know who will take over when she goes on holiday this summer.
However, she described Ms Byrne's work as "brilliant, absolutely brilliant".
Ms Byrne was brought in to provide holiday cover on 'Morning Ireland'.
Aine Lawlor, who was recently treated for cancer, is expected to return later in the year while Aoife Kavanagh resigned over the Fr Kevin Reynolds libel controversy.
Ms Finucane was yesterday launching a report on a new training programme for medical staff who provide oncology care and end-of-life care to lesbian, gay and bisexual patients.
"If you can't be true to who you are when you are at your most vulnerable, it has to make you more vulnerable than everyone else," she said.
The 50-minute programme -- funded by the Irish Cancer Society, HSE and the Irish Hospice Foundation -- has been taken by 200 staff at St Vincent's University Hospital, Beaumont Hospital, St Francis Hospice and Our Lady's Hospice.