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Monday 17 December 2018

Lyster to 'hang up his hat' after 34 years on 'The Sunday Game'

Michael Lyster Picture: INPHO/Billy Stickland
Michael Lyster Picture: INPHO/Billy Stickland
Will Slattery

Will Slattery

Michael Lyster's reign as anchor of 'The Sunday Game' will come to an end this year.

The 64-year-old has been the face of the flagship GAA programme for 34 years. RTÉ confirmed that he will leave the broadcaster when he turns 65 as he is an employee rather than a contractor.

"I'll be hanging up my hat at the end of 2018," Lyster said in a statement.

"I've a full season of top-class GAA action to get through with the National Leagues and, of course, the Championships this summer and that's what I'm focused on. There's some really exciting changes to come in this year's Championship and I'm looking forward to seeing how they will impact the game.

"Following my health scare a few years ago, every day and every year was a bonus. That's the mindset I've continued to have and I feel incredibly lucky to have another season to look forward to at the helm."

Lyster was a guest on 'The Ray D'Arcy Show' yesterday to discuss his retirement, as well as who will succeed him.

"I can tell you honestly that I don't know," said Lyster when asked who his replacement might be. "I know who is on the shortlist. This will be revealed by RTÉ in the next week or two so we will wait and see how that one goes."

Des Cahill, Darragh Maloney and Joanne Cantwell are among the front-runners for the job.

Lyster has suffered from health issues in the past few years and by his own admission "was lucky to be alive" following a heart attack in 2015.

The veteran broadcaster had spent that day playing golf with his friend and Irish Independent writer Vincent Hogan, who dropped him home. He had left his phone in the car and called Hogan, who arrived back at the house just a few minutes later to find Lyster lying unconscious in the hallway.

"Everyone was in bed, so Vincent called up the stairs to my wife Anne, and she came down and started CPR, while he phoned for an ambulance," Lyster said at the time.

Irish Independent

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