Football

"Different Class" - Relive 5 Of Jimmy Magee's Greatest Moments

"Different Class" - Relive 5 Of Jimmy Magee's Greatest Moments

The accompanying voice to so many international sporting events, collating Jimmy Magee's 'best moments' ultimately generates a selection of our collective favourite sporting moments.

One of the distinctive voices of Irish sport, his passing today allows us the opportunity to indulge in some of his most outstanding moments from the commentary gantry.

Perhaps most recognisable as the voice that described so many of Ireland's Olympic boxing successes, Magee's passion for that particular sport never seemed to wane; he celebrated Katie Taylor's victory in 2012 with the same vociferousness that Michael Carruth's victory in 1992 generated.

Take a few minutes to run through some of the 'Memory Man's' most unforgettable moments.

Diego Maradona vs England, 1986:

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"Its, eh, Enrique to Maradona ... aw different class ... different class".

One of the greatest goals ever scored in a World Cup finals, Magee's instinctive response to Maradona's brilliance is remarkable. Looking on agog as the Argentine slalomed between England's despairing defence, Magee was left temporarily speechless. Rounding Peter Shilton, an exasperated Magee sums what the world had witnessed perfectly; 'different class'.

John Treacy, 1984 Los Angeles Olympics:

The marathon is hardly the ideal Olympic event to commentate upon. Requiring someone capable of filling the dead air with interesting details, Magee was the right person for the job.

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In a year that John Treacy would run in the searing Los Angeles heat, Magee was at hand for yet another momentous moment in Irish sporting history. Recalling here his memories of the event and his own actions throughout, as Treacy races down the final stretch we are reminded why Magee was lauded for his sporting recall.

Barry McGuigan Becomes World Featherweight Champion, 1985:

A connective sporting presence during a fractured time, when the 24 year old McGuigan became a World Champion in QPR's Loftus Road Stadium in 1985, Magee brought the fight into Irish homes via the radio this time.

Having convinced all that were listening that McGuigan must have beaten the champion Pedroza, Magee's judgement was unanimously shared by the judges and 'the little man from Clones was the featherweight champion of the world.'

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Entering the ring to then talk with McGuigan, this is a fascinating snapshot of an incredible sporting moment.

Michael Carruth Wins Gold In Barcelona, 1992:

Ireland's first Olympic gold medal since Ronnie Delaney in Melbourne 1956, Michael Carruth's success in Barcelona had a telling effect on Magee.

As he did his best to relay what was happening to a frenzied Irish crowd at home, he admits to feeling 'a lump in my throat' when Carruth's victory was confirmed.

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A noted fan of Irish amateur boxing, one got the sense that Magee was moved at being able to witness first hand a product of this environment reach such heights - "Michael Carruth is the champion, the champion, the champion!"

Katie Taylor Wins Gold In London, 2012:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FUe_nVvgaT0&t=17s

An unforgettable moment in Irish sport, it seemed that the entire country came to a standstill for Taylor's Olympic final in August 2012.

The natural choice to call such a fight, Magee was in his element as Taylor delivered sealed her place in Ireland's Olympic history. As the medal ceremony came around shortly thereafter, the veteran commentator of so many Olympic games couldn't hide his delight as Amhrán na bhFiann rang out around the ExCel arena.


Some Memorable Quotes:

"It's a rip-roarer, an absolutely titanic struggle if that's the right thing to say about a Belfast man ... Make sure the rivets are tight and away you go!"

- At the 2012 London Olympics, Magee gets caught up with the Belfast boxer Paddy Barnes

"Hey Jimmy! Can you remember where our hotel is?"

- During the excitement of Euro '88, some Irish fans tested the capabilities of the 'Memory Man'


See Also: Des Cahill Pays Emotional Radio Tribute To 'Pure Rogue' Jimmy Magee

Arthur James O'Dea

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