Sporting world in mourning over death of legendary commentator

·Sports Editor
·4-min read
John Motson and Gerald Sinstadt, pictured here watching Charlton and Newcastle at Upton Park.
TV Commentators John Motson and Gerald Sinstadt (R) watching Charlton and Newcastle at Upton Park. (Photo by Phil O'Brien/EMPICS via Getty Images)

The sporting world is mourning the death of beloved commentary icon Gerald Sinstadt.

The former BBC and ITV commentator died this week at the age of 91.

The Englishman covered four football World Cups, as well as the Olympic Games and golf majors.

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He became one of football's most well-respected and recognisable voices.

"We are deeply saddened at the passing of Gerald Sinstadt, who was a brilliant broadcaster as well as an influential and supportive figure for young people entering into broadcasting," ITV said.

BBC Sport executive producer Andrew Clement said: He was a craftsman, a very good commentator and just a lovely man."

Sinstadt was behind the microphone for some of football's most iconic moments.

He called Diego Maradona's goal at the 1994 World Cup before the Argentinian was kicked out of the tournament after failing a drugs test.

He was also the sideline reporter on the day of the Hillsborough disaster in 1989 when 97 people were killed in a crowd crush.

He also covered four of Sir Steve Redgrave's five Olympic gold medals in rowing.

“The game made my job easy and I thought: ‘Hang on, I can do this,’” Sinstadt said previously. 

“Unfortunately, I soon realised you couldn’t just turn up on the day and hope for the best. 

"If you don’t do your proper research the listener will soon catch you out.”

Sporting world mourns death of Gerald Sinstadt

Sinstadt was perhaps most famous for being one of the first commentators to call out racism in the stands from football fans, doing so during West Bromwich Albion's 5-3 win over Manchester United at Old Trafford in 1978.

"Gerald Sinstadt was the football voice of my childhood growing up in the north west," said fellow commentator Nigel Adderley.

"A great commentator and journalist. ‘Kick Off’ was a brilliant programme - Friday’s 6.30 meant only one thing."

Phil McNulty of the BBC said: "Gerald Sinstadt was a brilliant commentator and the voice of North-West football for so long for so many of us."

Football great Phil Lineker added: "Saddened to hear that Gerald Sinstadt has left us. 

"A wonderful broadcaster and brilliant wordsmith with such a distinctive voice. RIP Gerald."

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