Legendary AFL commentator Bruce McAvaney
Legendary AFL commentator Bruce McAvaney

AFL caller’s iconic voice to be missed


Anthony Breeze

THE AFL world was rocked this week, not only on the field but off it as well.

The great AFL commentator Bruce McAvaney announced his retirement for game day commentating, effective immediately.

Every AFL fan who has listened to a McAvaney call will find it difficult to listen to a grand final without hearing his iconic voice.

McAvaney has called over a 1000 AFL games and 20 grand finals and when the game was close he would put chills down your spine when your team kicked a goal.

He formed a great partnership with co-commentator Dennis Cometti where both men would just bounce off each other during a call making it a memorable game to listen to.

McAvaney had his own style of calling which differed from the exaggerated Brian Taylor, the dry nature of Sandy Roberts or the shouting style of NRL's Ray Warren.

The Seven network has some huge shoes to fill. They have short-listed James Brayshaw, Luke Darcy, Gerald Whateley and Hamish McLachlan as the men to replace this legend.

Bruce McAvaney
Bruce McAvaney

While McAvaney will be lost to the AFL he won't be lost to sports calling where he will be leading the Olympic charge later this year.

I grew up listening to McAvaney call Olympic athletics events and was hooked from his first call and he was my first idol caller.

Thank you Bruce for years of calling many sports.

Lions and Cats threat to Tigers?

THE AFL season is only a few weeks away so how does your team stack up for the premiership.

If you are a mighty Richmond Tigers fan, the bookies give you another huge chance of clinching the flag and claiming a three-peat.

Last year's runners up, The Geelong Cats, are tipped for another impressive year. They have recruited really well.

With the addition of tallman Joe Danigher, the Brisbane Lions are also given a big chance. Port Adelaide and West Coast are on the next line of betting and both have depth in their squads to go along way into the finals.


The Western Bulldogs, St Kilda and Collingwood are the only other minor chances that are given any hope of lifting the trophy come September.

Melbourne, Carlton and Greater Western Sydney will cause a few upsets during the year but just quite have the firepower to go with the big boys of the competition.

Fremantle, Gold Coast, Hawthorn, Sydney and Essendon are the next four in betting. They are tipped to not cause too much damage to the competition at all. Unfortunately if you follow

Adelaide ($101) or North Melbourne ($151) then the bookies give you no hope and believe you are in for a very long year.

I can see only four genuine chances for the flag - Richmond, Geelong, Port Adelaide and the Brisbane Lions.

Let the season begin.

Quick thoughts

WINNERS: 1. The NRL season is only seven days away and fans cannot wait until kick-off to cheer on their respective teams to victory. It promises to be an enthralling season.

2. All the golf players who dressed in a red shirt and black trousers on the last day of the latest Tucson event to honour Tiger Woods after his recent car crash. That was a very nice touch.

3. It's great to hear the encouraging news on champion AFL player Royce Hart after his recent car crash. The Hall of Famer was rough and tough on the field and has become a fighter off.

Losers: 1. World rugby for crushing the hopes of female union players by postponing this year's Women's World Cup.

2. The NSW Waratahs started the season with a thrashing by the Queensland Reds and followed it up with a record loss to the ACT Brumbies. For a proud state team, they are currently an embarrassment.

Sporting birthdays March 4

1. 1951: Kenny Dalglish - Scottish born soccer player who would go on to become one of the greats of the game. He started his career with Celtics (204 games) and finished it at Liverpool (355 games). He was knighted in 2018 for services to the game.

2. 1979: Geoff Huegill - Champion Aussie swimmer who won silver and bronze at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. He also held the 50m butterfly world record for three years.

On this day

1. 1927: Babe Ruth becomes the highest paid player in MLB history when he signed a $70,000 per season contract with the New York Yankees.

2. 1931: Don Bradman is bowled for a rare first ball duck by Herman Griffith.

3. 1968: Joe Frazier defeats Buster Mathis to capture the vacant world heavyweight title and take his record to 20-0.

4. 1977: West Indian fast bowler Colin Croft takes a fantastic 8/29 against Pakistan to record the best bowling figures for his country.