Freshly retired George Hook says TV “saved his life”

George Hook
George Hook

Freshly retired George Hook has told how his TV “saved his life”.

The broadcaster who retired from rugby punditry after Ireland’s Six-Nations victory on Saturday, insisted that his decision won’t be reversed.

The rugby pundit told Brendan O’Connor on the John Murray show this morning on RTE radio that he was keen to play down the significance of his leaving.

“At the end of the day it’s a TV guy going, not the Taoiseach,” he said.

“When I got a call from RTE 20 years ago to do a match, the only other phone calls I was getting at the time where Irish Permanent wanting me in the High Court.

“My wife didn’t want me back any more, I had 11 banks daily saying ‘what about the money you owe us’.

“But if I’m proud of one thing I’m proud I took the opportunity RTE gave me, and my kids are proud too. I never thought I’d have a pension, paying for groceries would be the maximum, so the prospect of a pension is extraordinary.

Although gone from our rugby screens, he’ll continue on his Newstalk radio show The Right Hook for the immediate future.

When asked what his plans are he said he wanted ‘to give something back to young people’s rugby’.

“My wife has told me though, if I think I’m coming home for lunch I’m very much mistaken.

“But look life in the media is very rewarding, it’s well paid, you have a public image, but it’s terribly demanding.

“I’ve been working seven days a week for the last 20 years, now it’s time for a break.