How the 4x4 Pushchair Formation Final has kept commentator Nick Heath from running out of things to say

Heath started commentating on everyday life after the rugby season was suspended (Nick Heath)
Heath started commentating on everyday life after the rugby season was suspended (Nick Heath)
16:24pm, Mon 13 Apr 2020
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When the world of sport began to disappear in March, millions of fans were left with nothing to watch.

Nick Heath was left with nothing to talk about.

As a freelance commentator, primarily for rugby union, Heath was watching his work go up in smoke as the rugby season, along with pretty much everything else, was kicked into touch.

Then a lifeline came after he chose to upload a video to Twitter to make his friends laugh.

"In all honestly, I didn't sit and plan it. It was a case of seeing that the sporting calendar was disappearing before my eyes, as was my work as a freelance commentator. 

"I wasn't getting too worried because at the beginning we thought it might just be a four-week thing. So I was just out and about and I thought 'I'll film a bit of some lads playing football and rehash an old commentary voice I used to do to keep my mates entertained and maybe a handful of people will like it'.

"[Going viral] was a complete surprise, as was the notifications I was getting when Greg James played it out on his Radio One breakfast show, so yeah it was all a big surprise."

Then lockdown came along and Heath felt a 'responsibility to make people smile'.

"It's been good fun to do and I've been humbled by the hundreds, if not thousands, of messages from frontline key workers or people who are worried about family members or people who have found this all very difficult. 

"They've had very tough days but I've given them their first belly laugh they've had for a while and that's an amazing gift to be giving people. It wasn't the original plan but it has been a collateral positive and there's sort of a sense of responsibility to keep people smiling. 

"If I keep finding the opportunity to keep doing them then I will."

Legendary sports commentator Andrew Cotter has also been getting in on the lifestyle commentary game and the two released similar videos.

Heath said: "I interviewed Andrew for my own podcast called 'Cue Commentator' and in that he said to me he'd filmed that clip at around the same time I had done my first one.

"But he saw that go out and he saw the reaction to it and thought 'well I can't very well put mine out now, it will look like a copy cat'. I was like 'you've got to put it out because I'm sure it's brilliant!'

"His voice is far more synonymous with sport in the UK than mine is, so to hear the voice of the boat race or the golf or athletics or rugby union doing that is brilliant and hilarious.

"I think it's had seven million views now. He's managed to get the same figures on that video than the BBC get on a free-to-air Six Nations match!"

As well as uploading his videos, Heath is also doing a bi-weekly pub quiz. Fans have been donating to a link Heath shared on his Twitter feed to ensure an income at this difficult time.

"Yeah it's certainly keeping me distracted from not having any real work and people have been generous with the link I've put on my Twitter feed.

"People can drop a contribution in if they've been entertained by it all. A friend of mine said it's the busker rule right, 'if you stop long enough to listen then you have to pay'.

"Actually in terms of earnings it's made me feel a little less worried about the next mortgage payment and you know we could be here for several months and I may need to rely on that."

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