What are the Key Selection Criteria for an effective football special comments commentator? Identify game trends? Pick apart tactics? Predict what might happen? Simple language, good timing, clear communication skills? It's not asking for much, is it? Or is it? Has there ever been a special comments commentator who, during the course of play, has been able to consistently describe the game along those simple lines? Most tell you superfluous stats, what you already know, what you've just seen, the bleedin' obvious. Many talk rubbish. Many talk rubbish and have their on air partners chime in with their own rubbish like "Blighty, you genius" and "you said it, Leigh" and "You have done your research, Tom." Well, I guess they are trying to sell their product.
Nathan Buckley was excellent, but Paul Roos, judging by his laconic demeanour, clear communication and obvious understanding of the caper may well go closest to meeting all the commentator KSCs. Not that the bar is raised particularly high, or to put it in the modern commentarial parlance, not that the vertical augmentation appliance is elevated to a satisfactory altitude:
PAUL Roos says too many AFL commentators fail to do their research and simply tell viewers how they believe the game should be played.
The former Sydney coach is the star signing for Fox Sports, where he will give special comments and appear on review show On The Couch.
But Roos says he is determined to call the game as it is, rather than how he would like it to be played. He believes it is too easy for former players and coaches out of touch with the game to influence the views of the supporters.
I would love to see Bruce McAvaney (a true pro; used to gush; was over-exposed; got the balance right; discovered his sense of humour, probably because he is working with Dennis Cometti), Dennis Cometti (easily the best in the business) and Paul Roos do the Friday night matches.