Paddy McGuinness reveals he called Question of Sport host Sue Barker after taking her job

NEW Question of Sport host Paddy McGuinness has had a clear-the-air chat with axed predecessor Sue Barker.

The Top Gear star, 48, phoned veteran Sue to ensure there was no ill-feeling between them.

The former tennis star, 65, has been discarded as BBC director general Tim Davie tries to win younger audiences.

Paddy said: “It’s a big change — Sue’s been the host for the last 20 years or so.

“That was in the back of my mind so I rang her up and had a really good chat with her and she was so nice and supportive.

“For me personally, once I spoke to Sue, the rest will be what it will be. My priority was taking over from Sue and treating that with respect because of how loved she is.”

Team captains Matt Dawson, 48, and Phil Tufnell, 55, are also being replaced by Olympian Sam Quek, 32, and rugby star Ugo Monye, 38.

But the changes upset fans who said Sue, Matt and Phil were unfairly treated and accused the BBC of ageism.

Despite having no sporting pedigree and claiming little knowledge of sport outside football and snooker, Paddy insists he can handle the role.

He said: “As long as I can read, I’m OK. I’ve got the answers right in front of me — I’ve just got to pronounce everybody’s names correctly.”

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