Belfast Telegraph

Billy on the Box: Steve Rider back in action with a giant telly

It’s typical. You wait four years for a Haka to appear and suddenly two come along all at once.

The World Cup began with a song and a dance at the opening |ceremony but the most pleasing thing on view was the return of a much-missed old friend — Steve Rider (pictured).

Last seen, or not, presenting touring cars on ITV 8, he’s back and no doubt over the way at Channel Four there was an almighty sound of hands slapping foreheads as they thought ‘why didn’t we get him for the athletics rather than the strategically shaved rabbit that was caught in the headlights?’

All that time in helmets hasn’t helped his hair though as I had to look twice just to make sure that Sandi Toksvig hadn’t somehow been wheeled into the studio.

Good to have him back, but seven weeks? There’s no way that big TV screen is going to withstand seven weeks of it being pawed at by Lawrence Dallaglio, like a gorilla trying to get at a banana in a bottle.

ITV have assembled an impressive line-up — Francois Pienaar, Michael Lynagh, Sean Fitzpatrick and an assortment of lesser Celts, although you wonder who is going to be dragged out for the clash between Georgia and Russia.

Does anyone have Ortis Deley’s number? It could be handy for his Gadget Show experience in case Lawrence gets too cross and batters the TV into submission and you won’t have to worry about him freezing as no-one will be watching anyway.

Belfast Telegraph

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