Wendy Austin interviewed me last week on news of the death of Malcolm Brodie. She rightly called him a legend and used the same term introducing me. Wendy meant well but I don’t deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as Malcolm.
I knew him for over 40 years since he offered this former Methodist College pupil a summer job as a ‘copy boy’ on the floor of the Telegraph sports room. He knew that working for the paper was all I ever wanted.
When I missed out on becoming a ‘Thompson Graduate Trainee’ there in 1974, Malcolm told me to come and work for him directly as a Sports reporter — “forget the training”, he said.
He offered twice the salary the BBC subsequently paid me. He never resented the fact that I turned him down and he was a constant source of support and advice ever since.
Like Sir Alex Ferguson, I loved the way Malky never discarded his accent.
He was once late for dinner with colleagues, including me, on an obscure football trip to Europe, explaining he’d “had to finish a piece for Pravda.” I’ll miss him: I loved him.