McLaren, Bill

Known as the voice of rugby, Bill McLaren was a Scottish rugby union commentator and journalist until his retirement in 2002. He started out by teaching Physical Education until 1987, training numerous young athletes who eventually went on to play rugby for Scotland. He began working for the Hawick Express as a junior reporter. Through this reporting position, he found his love for commentary and began a career with BBC.

In 1953, Bill began rugby commentary via BBC Radio until he switched to television commentary six years later. He was well known for his colorful and descriptive phrases used during matches. Throughout his career, he won several awards including an MBE in 1992, an OBE in 1995, and a CBE in 2003. His final commentary was at the 2002 Wales v. Scotland match, where the entire crowd began singing ‘For He's a Jolly Good Fellow' to celebrate him. In 2001, he was inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame, making him the first non-international to be. After his retirement, he wrote the book Rugby's Great Heroes and Entertainers. He passed away in 2010 at the age of 86.

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