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John Motson OBE to Receive BAFTA Special Award

10 April 2018
Event: Virgin TV British Academy Television AwardsDate: Sunday 13 May 2018Venue: Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, Belvedere Rd, Lambeth, LondonHost: Sue Perkins-Area: Special Award PortraitBAFTA/Hannah Taylor

Long-standing football commentator to be honoured at the Virgin TV British Academy Television Awards on Sunday 13 May

Read our Special Award feature >

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts has announced today that football commentator John Motson will be honoured with the Special Award at the Virgin TV British Academy Television Awards on Sunday 13 May, at the Royal Festival Hall in London.

The Special Award will be presented to John Motson in recognition of his outstanding contribution to sports broadcasting. The award follows the recent announcement that the legendary commentator will retire from the BBC at the end of the season after a 50-year career.

John Motson OBE, fondly known as ‘Motty’, is one of the BBC’s longest serving commentators. He has worked on over 2,000 football matches on both television and radio covering many major championships since the late 1970s.

During his career, Motson has covered 10 World Cups, 10 European Championships, 29 FA Cup finals and more than 200 England games. He has also worked as a commentator on EA Sport’s FIFA games series.

Born in Salford, England, Motson began his career as a reporter for Sheffield newspaper the Morning Telegraph. After a short stint at the newspaper, he was hired by the BBC as one of its television and radio presenters for BBC Sport, starting off at BBC Radio 2 and moving over to popular television football programme, Match of the Day.

Krishnendu Majumdar, Chair of BAFTA’s Television Committee, said: “Legendary football commentator John Motson’s long and impressive career makes him deserving of this Special Award which celebrates the excellence he brings to his work. He is much loved by the nation’s football fans, who have been gripped while watching and listening to his commentary on some of the most memorable matches in televised football history. I look forward to seeing him receiving the award on the night.”

John Motson OBE said: “It is such an honour to be given the Special Award by BAFTA at this year’s ceremony, especially on the day of my last football commentary for Match of the Day. I’ve had such a rewarding career and I’m looking forward to celebrating this award with colleagues, friends and family.”

The Virgin TV British Academy Television Awards will be hosted by Sue Perkins at the Royal Festival Hall, London on Sunday 13 May.


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Hearn / Hep Kwakye-Saka

T: 0203 003 6456 / 482
E: [email protected] / [email protected]



The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) is a world-leading independent arts charity that brings the very best work in film, games and television to public attention and supports the growth of creative talent in the UK and internationally. Through its Awards ceremonies and year-round programme of learning events and initiatives – which includes workshops, masterclasses, scholarships, lectures and mentoring schemes in the UK, USA and Asia – BAFTA identifies and celebrates excellence, discovers, inspires and nurtures new talent, and enables learning and creative collaboration. For advice and inspiration from the best creative minds in working in film, games and television, visit For more, visit

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