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 Tuesday, 31 December, 2002, 00:03 GMT
The Commentators
Henry Blofeld and Bill McLaren are BBC legends
Blofeld and McLaren are BBC legends
Bill McLaren CBE

Bill McLaren, the voice of rugby union, gave his last commentary in 2002.

A recognition of his work behind the microphone has come in the form of a CBE.

"The award is a huge honour - hopefully I will get some respect from the grandchildren now," said McLaren.

Simply put, the 79-year-old Scot was as good a sports commentator as any and will be considered irreplaceable.

Bill McLaren factfile
Age: 79
Place of birth: Hawick, Scotland
Career highlights: Playing for Hawick XV, commentating on rugby union for BBC TV from 1963 to 2002, becoming first non-international to be inducted into International Rugby Hall of Fame

He made his national commentating debut in 1953, on the radio as his beloved Scotland were beaten 12-0 by Wales.

His last commentary came this year, as he described the action at the Tilney Melrose Sevens.


Henry Blofeld OBE

Henry Blofeld enjoys a considerable following because of his cricket commentating deeds and has been rewarded with an OBE.

An old Etonian, Blofeld has returned to BBC's Test Match Special team after a brief stint with BSkyB.

Famed for his familiar tones and love of cakes, Blofeld's chances of playing for England were hampered by a road accident in his youth.

Henry Blofeld factfile
Age: 63
Place of birth: Norfolk, England
Career highlights: Playing for Cambridge University and Norfolk, debuting for Test Match Special in 1974, writing for every broadsheet newspaper about cricket

But he did make appearances for Cambridge University and Norfolk.

He made his debut for Test Match Special in 1974 and has remained there since, aside from his three-year stint at BSkyB between 1991-1994.

He has written for The Times, The Observer, The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph and continues to pen articles for The Independent.

All the details from the 2002 New Year Honours list

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