DAVID PYE: Let's make Saturdays a World of Sport on TV again
12:00pm Friday 6th June 2014 in Sport
REMEMBER when Saturdays were all about sport on television?
After a morning dominated by children’s programmes like Tiswas, Swap Shop or Saturday Superstore it was an entire afternoon devoted to sport.
Grandstand on one side; World of Sport on the other – the days before Sky and its multi-channel options meant a more straightforward choice on what to watch.
And it was not just about football all day. You had the previews to the big games ahead on Football Focus and Saint and Greavsie but then it was a variety of other sports.
My favourite had to be the wrestling – and I mean the old-school British kind not the showbiz of the WWE in America. Big Daddy and Giant Haystacks competing in an unlikely venue such as Sutton Coldfield Civic Hall was classic viewing.
It was even more entertaining when a member of the crowd, more often than not a lady pensioner, got up to remonstrate ringside, swinging her handbag at those unlikely sporting heroes.
Those were the days. Maybe it is just the fact I am fast approaching the big ‘four-o’ birthday in a fortnight that has got me all reminiscent.
I cannot deny the wonders of modern technology where you can watch the replay of a goal on your smartphone within moments of it happening. Gone are the days of waiting for Granada Soccer Night for the highlights.
You can now get the results as they come in on your iPad; there is no need to wait for Buff to come through to the papershop on the way home from Burnden.
But I am also a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to some things and Saturday scheduling is a big bee in my bonnet.
Why must we endure cookery programmes instead of kids TV? Does someone at the BBC actually think that’s what people want to see that early? Does anybody eating their bacon sandwich really need to know how to cook their Sunday roast at 10am 24 hours in advance?
We still have Football Focus but after that we are often subjected to an old western, Ealing comedy or Harry Potter – again!
I suspect it is a defeatist attitude from terrestrial channels who feel Sky has got the sporting viewing figures boxed off with their award-winning Soccer Saturday show.
But if I am not at the match, I would much rather be watching sport than the likes of Phil Thompson telling me what he’s watching. At least then the vidiprinter would be more exciting not knowing whether your team had scored 7 (SEVEN) or not. Get me the Doctor. I want to use his TARDIS to take us back in time.