Saturday 24 August 2019

RTE apologise for comments made by Eamon Dunphy and Joe Brolly

Eamon Dunphy and (inset) Joe Brolly
Eamon Dunphy and (inset) Joe Brolly

RTE's Des Cahill last night issued an apology to Barry McGuigan for comments made by Eamon Dunphy and Joe Brolly about the Irish fighter on Ireland's Greatest Sporting Moment two weeks ago.

In the show's latest installment last night, host Des Cahill opened by saying: "In our first programme on the 80s, we featured Barry McGuigan's wonderful achievement in becoming world champion.

"Now the conversations that followed were robust and they strayed somewhat from the great moment that we set out to mark.

"For that we would like to apologise to Barry and his legion of supporters. It wasn't in the spirit of what the programme was designed to do and lots of you let us know your feelings. We're happy to recognise that."

On the opening show Ray Houghton's goal against England in Stuttgart in 1988 was voted moment of the decade but before that Dunphy and Brolly discussed the merits of the other moments shortlisted, including McGuigan's famous WBA featherweight title victory over Eusebio Pedroza in 1985.

Both Dunphy and Brolly strongly agreed that McGuigan should not be in the running with Brolly admitting he didn't like the Clones boxer.

Dunphy argued that McGuigan's success was largely due to Pedroza - then 29 - being "over the hill".

Brolly added: "It wasn't the real thing. Sectarianism was at its height in the North in 1987. That was showbiz, the white dove on the shorts and all of that."

Later in the programme, Brolly went further. "Anybody but McGuigan, I'd like to start with... I just don't like the man. I am biased against him. I want to declare that just in the interest of honest discourse."

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