What the papers said about . . . Brian Johnston
Sunday 09 January 1994
' 'Botham (out hit-wicket with his thigh) didn't quite manage to get his leg over'. Actually, Jon Agnew said that. But what everyone remembers is Johnston's half-minute of giggling which was so infectious that Ronnie Corbett, listening on a motorway, wrote that he'd had to pull on to the hard shoulder.' Daily Mirror
Johnners . . . made millions weep with laughter at his endearingly innocent silliness. In the middle of one Test he spotted his friend Ray Illingworth and said: 'I see Illingworth is relieving himself at the Pavilion end'.' Daily Express
'There were days at the Test matches when you suspected the commentary team were praying for rain. John Arlott, the epigram maker, would retreat to a corner with a bottle of claret, leaving the microphone at the mercy of Brian Johnston. What followed was a torrent of anecdote and dormitory wit illustrated by the occasional well-rehearsed Bertie Woosterish gaffe.' Daily Mail
'Brian Johnston simply proved that the old-fashioned values of good manners, professionalism and optimism could still work in the most cynical and rushed of times.' Daily Telegraph
'He was a man whose personal church clock stood perpetually at 10 to three, and for whom there was always honey still for tea. Not just honey, either: cream cake and sponge cake and cherry cake and Dundee cake and walnut cake and, ooh, isn't it splendid, and many thanks to Mrs Ada Cramp of 3 Ironside Crescent, Scunthorpe, who sent it in to us all here in the commentary box. Johnston's enduring contribution to Western civilisation is the cake-by-cake commentary.' The Times
'It doesn't really matter if it was Don Mosey who observed that 'the bowler's Holding, the batsman's Willey', or that Rex Alston noticed they were going to watch 'Afaq to Knight at the Nursery end'. In the fullness of time, they will all be Johnston's remarks because we want them to be and they enhance the legend.' The Guardian
'The bowler's Holding, the batsman's Willey . . . God bless you Johnners, we'll never forget you.' Daily Mirror
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