From Andy Murray to Marion Bartoli: The many on-air gaffes of John Inverdale

Has the BBC man lost his way or are fans on social media just being cruel?

John Inverdale working on commentary.
John Inverdale Has the BBC man been unfairly targetted? Image Stu Forster/Getty Images

For 20 years, John Inverdale was seen as a bastion of all that is great about sports coverage on British terrestrial television.

However, in recent years, the advent of social media has seen the once reliable presenter reduced to wreck of accidental swear words and the occasional bouts of alleged sexism.

The latest incident involved his quizzing of Andy Murray in the immediate aftermath of his second consecutive Olympic Gold medal in the men’s tennis, where Inverdale appeared to overlook the achievements of Venus and Serena Williams – arguably two of the most famous female tennis stars to have ever graced the game.


And while there will be those keen to defend Inverdale’s actions as a mere slip of the mind and tongue, the evidence is piling up…

Take, for example, his on-going feud with fellow Olympics presenter and national treasure Steve Redgrave. John has even taken to calling Steve “Oddjob” due to his stoic silence during their broadcasts together.

Steve, meanwhile, has countered that by referring to Inverdale as “Jaws” in reference to his penchant for speaking at length and seemingly with no end in sight.

Either way, relations are frosty, as Redgrave’s strop-off in the clip below demonstrates:


Redgrave even resorted to some tactics straight out of the school playground, responding to another Inverdale barb by shaking his umbrella over him. You tell him, Steve.


Sir Steve has never shied away from an opportunity to embarrass Inverdale either, setting up one interview with a New Zealand rower before berating John for failing to follow protocol and allow his home nation first dibs on a chat…


But this is only the half of it.

There’s the infamous Marion Bartoli comment, which came in the immediate aftermath of what should have been the French tennis star’s crowning moment – winning Wimbledon – and set the ball rolling for many of the Inverdale haters out there.


All of a sudden, John was under increased scrutiny, with some internet conspiracy theorists even returning to footage from the 2012 Olympics to uncover evidence of Inverdale potentially perving on Denise Lewis or, more specifically, Denise Lewis’s arse. We’re not convinced though…


It’s reduced Inverdale to a jibbering wreck, well almost, with the once-reliable broadcaster even slipping up on air with a swear word during ITV’s coverage of the French Open.


But that was nothing compared to the time he decided to talk about “Rose-c**ted” glasses during one BBC radio broadcast from the Cheltenham festival.


We just didn’t know where to look when he said that.

Despite his many mishaps, loaded can’t help but feel sorry for Inverdale though.

This once-great broadcaster can’t really be the foul-mouthed, sexist wind-up merchant some on social media would have you believe. Loaded just hopes he sorts himself out before the BBC are forced to take drastic action by rehiring Des Lynam.

What? Des is a UKIP supporter?! Give us strength…

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