| -1.9°C Dublin

entertainment Ivan Yates says his new TV sports show will focus on 'banter and craic' 


Broadcaster Ivan Yates

Broadcaster Ivan Yates

Broadcaster Ivan Yates

Broadcaster Ivan Yates has said “new opportunities started to emerge” while he was locked down in his home in Enniscorthy.

The presenter is to return to screens this week as co-host of a new live sports show called The Green Room on Virgin after a brief retirement.

During the summer, he stepped down from his roles hosting The Hard Shoulder on Newstalk and The Tonight Show on Virgin Media.

He said: "I can't say lockdown has treated me well, but living in Enniscorthy has been absolutely fantastic.

"Once I got rested and toxed and then detoxed a bit... new opportunities started to emerge."

Speaking to Pat Kenny, Ivan said he welcomed the opportunity to do something different, which as well as work on the family farm, he has also gotten involved in four different businesses.

He described the live sports and entertainment programme - which is kicking off with a Christmas special this week - as a 'bit of a piss-take' that will deal with the sporting issues of the day, but mainly be a bit of 'banter and craic'.

The Green Room, which Ivan co-hosts with Paddy Power, is a collaboration between Virgin Media and the mischief-making betting firm and takes a light hearted look at the sports and news of the week.

There will be some big name guests, contributions from Virgin Media sports presenter Niamh Kinsella, and impressions from talented mimic Conor Moore.

Ivan said: “In fairness, I have been given free rein to abuse people for years but the idea is to throw out the script and live in the moment as if it was a genuine conversation in the pub that someone has joined.”

The ex-Fine Gael minister wants to inject some fun into sports coverage.

Ivan explained: “I do find that a lot of sports journalism has become more intense, more serious and even righteous. I get the passion people have for their football teams — but on a Friday night you want to be entertained.”

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices

Online Editors