Sue Barker ‘sad to say goodbye’ to A Question Of Sport

Sue Barker has said she is "sad to say goodbye" to A Question Of Sport after it was announced she is stepping down after 24 years.

Team captains Matt Dawson and Phil Tufnell will also depart the long-running sports quiz show as part of a major shake-up.

Former professional tennis player Barker, 64, took over as presenter from commentator David Coleman in 1997.

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Virginia Wade Sue Barker Ross King Cliff Richard -in event-selected in picture (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/EMPICS via Getty Images)
14 Jun 1976: English Tennis player Sue Barker on her way to victory in the French Championships. She beat Russian Renata Tomanova in three sets. Mandatory Credit: Allsport Hulton/Archive
British tennis player Sue Barker swings her racket in a match during the Australian Open. (Photo by © Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)
Sue Barker waits to receive service (Photo by S&G/PA Images via Getty Images)
SUE BARKER 1980: An action picture of Miss Sue Barker, one of the British seeds, during the 1980 Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships. (Photo by PA Images via Getty Images)
British tennis player Sue Barker poses with singer Cliff Richard on October 25, 1983. (Photo by Jack Kay/Express/Getty Images)
Brian Jacks (c) gives a lift to Annabel Croft (l) and Sue Barker (r) as they publicise Sport Aid (Photo by S&G/PA Images via Getty Images)
BBC Sports presenters Des Lynam (left), Sue Barker and Steve Ryder (far right) with England and Liverpool soccer star Michael Owen, after he was named BBC Sports Personality of the Year, at London's QEII Conference Centre . * 2/8/99: Lynam signs with ITV as their main football presenter. (Photo by Tony Harris - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
No Commercial Use TV and sports presenter Sue Barker, with fellow tennis fan 'The Honey Monster' at the Wimbledon Tennis Campionships. (Photo by Fiona Hanson - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
TV presenter and former tennis player Sue Barker holds her OBE after receiving it at Buckingham Palace, London, 22nd February 2000. (Photo by Colin Davey/Getty Images)
(Left to right) BBC TV presenters Steve Rider, Sue Barker and John Inverdale, the BBC Olympic Games Sydney 2000 team meet, with representatives from team GB and the British Paralympic team in London. (Photo by Sean Dempsey - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
LONDON - MAY 21: Some of the cast of the sport relief special 'They think it's a question of sport' for sport relief 2002 in London, England.Left to right: Ally McCoist, Sue Barker and John Parrott.(Photo by Ken McKay/Comic Relief/Getty Images)
LONDON - MAY 21: The cast of the sport relief special 'They think it's a question of sport' in 2002. From left to right: Sue Barker, Ally McCoist, John Parrott, Stephen Fry, Gary Linekar, Nick Hancock, Frank Skinner.(Photo by Ken McKay/Comic Relief/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 07: WIMBLEDON 2002, London; MAENNER/FINALE; John McENROE, BBC MODERATORIN Sue BARKER (Photo by Bongarts/Getty Images)
Willie Carson with Sue Barker (Photo by John Walton - PA Images via Getty Images)
Roger Federer is interviewed by Sue Barker (Photo by Jon Buckle - PA Images via Getty Images)
Wimbledon champion Amelie Mauresmo is interviewed by the BBC's Sue Barker (Photo by Jon Buckle - PA Images via Getty Images)
Winner Zara Phillips stands with runners-up Beth Tweddle (second left) and Darren Clarke and presenters Gary Lineker and Sue Barker at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year, at the NEC in Birmingham. (Photo by Chris Radburn - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
Sue Barker and Gary Lineker during the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2007 awards, at the NEC in Birmingham. (Photo by David Davies - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
Sue Barker talks to Christine Ohuruogu during the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2007 awards, at the NEC in Birmingham. (Photo by David Davies - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
Presenter Sue Barker and Rebecca Adlingtonduring the BBC Sport Personality of the Year Awards at the Liverpool Echo Arena, Liverpool. (Photo by David Davies - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 17: TV Presenter Sue Barker (C) interviews Andre Agassi (L), Steffi Graf (2nd L), Tim Henman (2nd R) and Kim Clijsters (R) prior to the "Centre Court Celebration" at Wimbledon on May 17, 2009 in London, England. (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)
Welsh Opera singer Katherine Jenkins (R) is interview by BBC TV's Sue Barker (L) during the launch of the new retractable roof on centre court at The All England Lawn Tennis Club, England, on May 17, 2009. Andre Aggassi and Steffi Graf against Tim Henman and Kim Clijsters will be playing an exhibition mixed doubles match today on the Centre Court. AFP PHOTO/Glyn Kirk (Photo credit should read GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
David Haye (left) and Mark Cavendish on stage with Sue Barker (right) during the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Awards at the Sheffield Arena, Sheffield . (Photo by David Davies/PA Images via Getty Images)
Rafael Nadal is interviewd by Sue Barker of the BBC after losing his Men's Singles Final match against Novak Djokovic on Day Thirteen of the 2011 Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in Wimbledon, London, UK. Photo: Ben Radford (Photo by ben radford/Corbis via Getty Images)
Serena Williams talks to BBC presenter Sue Barker after winning her Ladies Singles Final match against Agnieszka Radwanska on Day Twelve of the 2012 Wimbledon Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London, United Kingdom. Photo: Visionhaus/Ben Radford (Photo by Ben Radford/Corbis via Getty Images)
Roger Federer chats to BBC presenter Sue Barker after his Men's Singles Final match against Andy Murray on Day Thirteen of the 2012 Wimbledon Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London, United Kingdom. Photo: Visionhaus/Ben Radford (Photo by Ben Radford/Corbis via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 16: London Mayor Boris Johnson speaks to Sue Barker ahead of the Rally Against Cancer charity match on day seven of the AEGON Championships at Queens Club on June 16, 2013 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 07: Andy Murray of Great Britain speaks with Sue Barker as he holds the Gentlemen's Singles Trophy following his victory in the Gentlemen's Singles Final match against Novak Djokovic of Serbia on day thirteen of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 7, 2013 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 12: Sue Barker attends the Battersea Dogs & Cats Home Collars and Coats Gala Ball at Battersea Evolution on November 12, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 19: John McEnroe and Sue Barker speak with Paloma Faith during the Wimbledon No. 1 Court Celebration in support of the Wimbledon Foundation at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on May 19, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)
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She said: "I've absolutely loved my 24 years fronting A Question of Sport, it's been my dream job.

"But I understand the BBC want to take the show in a new direction and I'm sad to say goodbye."

Ex-England rugby player Dawson, 47, and former English international cricketer Tufnell, 54, have led their teams on the show for 16 and 12 years respectively.

Tufnell tweeted he was "going to miss it hugely", adding: "thanks so much for all the lovely messages !!"

Dawson said: "Thanks for all the lovely messages. I'm not sure how to respond so I'll have a think. Needless to say I will miss @QuestionofSport immensely...."

Their final series together will be broadcast next year.

The new line-up is yet to be announced.

A BBC spokeswoman said: "We would like to thank Sue for her enormous contribution as the show's longest reigning host over the last 24 years, and Matt and Phil for their excellent team captaincy over 16 and 12 years respectively.

"Together they have ensured A Question of Sport remains a firm favourite with the BBC One audience.

"Sue, Matt and Phil's final series will be broadcast next year."

Referred to by the BBC as "the world's longest running TV sports quiz", the first edition of A Question Of Sport aired in January 1970.

The move comes weeks after the BBC's director-general Lord Hall was succeeded in the role by Tim Davie, the former chief executive of commercial arm BBC Studios.

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