The new series of A Question of Sport has launched with a brand new panel, dividing fans as they watched Paddy McGuinness take Sue Barker’s place as the host for the first time.
In September last year, it was announced that Sue would be leaving AQOS after 24 years on the sports quiz show, with team captains Matt Dawson and Phil Tufnell also stepping down from their roles.
Sue has since been replaced by former Take Me Out presenter Paddy in the revamped series, with hockey star Sam Quek and upcoming Strictly Come Dancing contestant Ugo Monye joining him as the new team captains.
On Friday evening, the first episode of the new series aired on BBC One, with many viewers quick to share their disappointment over Sue’s notable absence.
‘Didn’t think I’d miss Sue on the show as much as I do,’ one person tweeted.
‘Sue we miss you. Used to be my favourite show but this was awful,’ another said about the programme, which has been on air since 1968.
One person remarked that in their opinion, the new AQOS format ‘is a bit flat’.
‘Bring back Sue Barker immediately,’ another urged the BBC.
Some viewers jumped to the show’s defence, insisting that it may become more entertaining with the new line-up of presenters as the weeks go on.
‘Give it a few episodes to give them time to create some chemistry, but first impressions not good,’ someone wrote.
‘A good effort so far, and I appreciate it’s early days…. But bring back the dream team,’ another said.
Nonetheless, others were of the view that ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t try and fix it’.
Several viewers also compared AQOS to A League Of Their Own, as they thought the new format was trying to emulate the other TV show.
Ahead of the new series launch, Paddy joked that he hadn’t had to break up too many fights amid heated sporting debates.
‘Do you know what, it’s been actually really lovely. I’ve not had to stop many arguments at the minute,’ he said on The One Show.
Speaking of the new team captains Sam and Ugo, he continued: ‘‘They’re both very competitive, I would say that, but it’s kind of just flowed really and there’s been a really nice vibe.’
Paddy also teased the appearances of ‘the odd non-sporting people’, as guests, explaining that they’re ‘people who are passionate about sport but they’re not known for sport’.
A Question of Sport returns next Friday at 7.35pm on BBC One.