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  • 14-06-2017 10:19pm
    Registered Users Posts: 5,737 ✭✭✭ jacothelad

    Fred Cogley has passed away to the great scrummage in rugby heaven. R.I.P.


  • Subscribers Posts: 36,228 ✭✭✭✭ sydthebeat

    Ah Jesus

    The voice of my rugby upbringing


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,332 ✭✭✭✭ Losty Dublin

    My first and abiding memory of rugby was how my Dad would call me in from the garden on bitterly cold Saturday afternoons to watch what was then the 5 nations. And while we had brief salad days in the early 80's, the softly spoken commentary of Fred Cogley was forever both the comforting constant after an inevitable drubbing or the humble valour of what were then rare victories. We could have baten the All Blacks or the mighty Baa Baa's and he'd never get carried away. Sure, he was on Sports Stadium most of the year but it wasn't the same unless Fred was at the rugby, sheepskin coat at the ready. He warmed up virtually every moment of a game; I suppose you could say that he was the central heating of Irish Rugby.

    And as the game moved on Fred didn't seem to yet he did. He was always two steps ahead of the game even if he sounded a step behind; it took a long time for you to spot that in his delivery. When the 90's arrived and extra games made the TV schedules he seemed to take a back seat, covering games in Cardiff or Scotland while some new chaw called Sherwin got the home games along with Hamilton, before quietly retiring altogether to let the new guns get heated up over the things that never worried Fred, and unnecessarily at that.

    As for my own personal memories, well I was in his company three times. Once pitchside where he took in a J game with his son and one night in the Dropping Well, where he sat beside me one dinner time. That evening I rued not saying hello to him but I was blessed with one more chance in 2013, where I shared a lift with him in the Beacon. Not one to waste a third chance, I said hello and thanked him for all the entertainment from his years on the television. He thanked me and hoped that I got good sleep when he was on! Just as the lift stopped, he asked me what was up with me and I told him that it was a finger break.

    "Ah hands" he said; "They don't make them like they used to." :D

    Rest in Peace, Fred, and thank you again.

  • Subscribers Posts: 36,228 ✭✭✭✭ sydthebeat

    Thanks LD... Just perfect.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,009 ✭✭✭ leakyboots

    Him and Bill McLaren, Saturday afternoons in front of the fire with Dad watching Ireland getting hockeyed... fond memories.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,222 ✭✭✭ NUTLEY BOY

    I am sorry that he is gone. May he RIP.

    Some of my mob did slag him a bit for a particular occasional trip whereby he accidentally introduced a third team in to the commentary i.e Ireland v France but the scrum was awarded to England. Also, in typical schoolboy fashion, we just could not wait to hear him deal with the pronunciation of the name of the French Player Jean Condom. He didn't trip on it :D

    I suppose one problem for all commentators of Fred's hay day was the inevitable comparison that people made between them and the gold standard of rugby commentary namely Bill McLaren.

    I was glad to see and hear Fred reappear at the microphone in the early years of Setanta's then comprehensive coverage of Leinster Schools senior and junior cup matches. He made a very good job of it. In retrospect, I should have given him more respect as I actually valued and appreciated him more highly in his Setanta reincarnation where he actually made a lot of modern commentators seem so relatively mediocre and, quite frankly, irritating.

    Fred, thank you for the memories of an era of which you were an integral part..........

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  • Registered Users Posts: 24,754 ✭✭✭✭ emmet02

    Some man. Rest easy.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,384 CMOTDibbler

    Great commentator and a voice we'll never forget. Fitting that he got the full eighty with extra time.