Australian sports icon Bruce McAvaney just couldn’t resist.
The 69-year-old randomly dropped a reference to former Australian sprinter Matt Shirvington’s “tight shorts” during Seven’s coverage of the Commonwealth Games.
The colorful caller spoke for the men’s 200m semi-finals at Birmingham’s Alexander Stadium after Shirvington crossed over to the commentary team from a Channel 7 studio.
“Let’s go back to Bruce,” Shirvington said.
“It’s the men’s 200m and I’m jealous. There is a nice tailwind for them.”
McAvaney replied, “You’d like to put the shorts back on, wouldn’t you?
“And they were tight.”
The call received a brief giggle from Channel 7 athletics commentator Tamsyn Manou.
The comment may or may not be related to McAvaney’s revelation on Friday that he gets less than three hours of sleep a night in Birmingham.
McAvaney will provide commentary in the UK for the event where he will be reporting his fifth Commonwealth Games. The most popular sports goer in the country has also covered 11 Olympics.
More than 15 years after he put up his track spikes, Shirvington still has the most famous lunchbox in Australian sport – as immortalized by comedian Billy Birmingham’s commentary in The Twelfth Man.
The thunder of Shirvington is still a small part of the story of Australian sprint sensation Rohan Browning. The 24-year-old, who finished sixth in the 100m final at the Commonwealth Games on Thursday morning, was more likely to laugh at not wanting to be compared to the Channel 7 presenter.
When Browning made history last year by becoming the first Australian to qualify for the men’s 100 meters at an Olympics in 17 years, he was stitched up in a photo post on the World Athletics website showing an unflattering close-up of his crotch.
Browning responded to the photo with a lighthearted tweet: “Can someone from World Athletics update my profile picture please? I don’t want to draw Shirvo comparisons”.