Tony Gubba, football commentator, dies aged 69

File photo, taken in 2009, of commentator Tony Gubba. Gubba has died at the age of 69. Picture: Getty
File photo, taken in 2009, of commentator Tony Gubba. Gubba has died at the age of 69. Picture: Getty
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SPORTS presenter Tony Gubba has died following a short illness, his family have announced. He was 69.

Gubba spent much of his TV career working for the BBC, as a commentator and presenter for Saturday sports show Grandstand as well as the midweek sports show Sportsnight.

Dancing On Ice presenter Philip Schofield was among those who paid tribute today, and said his colleagues on the show would miss him.

“We were all aware how poorly he was but this is very sudden,” he said.

Schofield, who said he was speaking with the “saddest of hearts”, went on: “All my love and condolences to his family. I’m so glad I had the privilege of working with him and getting to know him. All of us at Dancing on Ice will miss him terribly.”

Gubba had been with the ITV show since its launch in 2006.

After a stint as a newspaper reporter, Gubba joined BBC Sport in 1972 replacing David Coleman as the presenter of Sportsnight.

He later went on to work on Match of the Day, both as commentator and front man, and to introduce Grandstand as a stand-in for Frank Bough.

Gubba was a regular contributor to the TV coverage of the Olympic Games, both summer and winter, from 1972 to 2012 and every World Cup from 1974 to 2006.

Alongside his love of football, he also voiced coverage of sports such as hockey, table tennis, golf, tennis, bobsleigh, ski jumping, darts and ice skating for the BBC.

He leaves two daughters, Claire, 40 and Libby, 38 and three granddaughters, and had been with his partner for 15 years.