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As a young schoolmaster Ian taught Tony Blair to read and write. He went on to become one of the most recognisable voices in rugby for over 40 years, and also masqueraded as a racing expert - owning a share of a string of remarkably slow horses. Ian can also boast to ghosting the official biography of Richard Burton.
Although Ian’s first job was to teach a boy called Tony Blair to read and write, he is now better known as the rugby correspondent on Radio 5 Live and the BBC. In summer he’s also masqueraded as an expert on horseracing, and has owned numerous shares in a succession of very slow horses that lacked any sort of ambition.
Ian’s own rugby career ended with a bad knee injury at the age of 25. By that time he had won a blue at Cambridge, played for London Scottish and the Barbarians, and won eight international caps for Scotland - for whom he served as vice captain.
Ian joined the BBC as a commentator and has covered all the biggest tournaments across the world. He was a regular member of the Rugby Special team and presented numerous previews and features for Grandstand. After a 47-year commentary career Ian finally called time on duties at the microphone covering an England v Australia test match at Twickenham.
A prolific writer, as well as enjoying a spell as a correspondent on The Sunday Timea, Ian is the author or co-author of over 30 books, teaming up with the likes of Gareth Edwards, Bill Beaumont and Andy Irvine. He also helped ghost the official biography of Richard Burton, which became a best-seller in over a dozen countries.
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