Sport Commentator

Job Description:

Sports commentators describe what's happening at sporting events and offer their opinions to listeners and viewers.

Job Category:
Culture, Media & Sport

What you will do:

You’ll commentate on anything from local football and rugby fixtures to large spectator games, competitions and events like the Olympic Games.

You’ll specialise in just one sport or cover a number of different ones.

Your duties may include:

  • preparing for an event by researching clubs or players
  • working with a production team
  • taking direction from a producer
  • interviewing sports professionals
  • commentating on events before, during and after the fixture
  • working with experts who give their opinion or statistics
  • updating your website, blog or social media feed

You’ll keep your audience engaged by commentating with excitement, enthusiasm and passion.

For radio, you’ll need to ‘say what you see’ and paint a picture of what’s happening for listeners.

You’ll need to stay impartial and give balanced commentary.


You’ll need:

  • knowledge of media production and communication
  • knowledge of English language
  • knowledge of computer operating systems, hardware and software & ability to use main software packages competently

As well as:

  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • to be flexible and open to change (adaptability skills)
  • the ability to use your initiative (drive)
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

To become a Sports Commentator, you don’t necessarily need specific subjects, but you should focus on building skills and knowledge that are relevant to the field. Sports Commentators typically have a strong foundation in sports, communication, and journalism. Here are some subjects and other considerations that can be beneficial for aspiring Sports Commentators:

  1. English: Excellent communication skills are essential for sports commentary. A strong foundation in English, including reading, writing, and speaking, is crucial.
  2. Media Studies: Many sports commentators have backgrounds in media studies, which can provide you with insights into broadcasting, journalism, and multimedia production.
  3. Physical Education (PE): PE can provide a good understanding of various sports, their rules, and strategies. This knowledge is useful when providing commentary during live events.
  4. Drama or Performing Arts: These subjects can help you develop presentation and public speaking skills, which are essential for commentating on live sports events.

Post School

You can get into this career:

  • by training as a journalist and then specialising in sports
  • by commentating on sports at a local level with or without a degree or background in journalism
  • after having a career as a sports professional

To build a network of industry contacts and to get experience, you could also:

  • volunteer to commentate on charity events like fun runs
  • commentate for amateur matches at schools, college or for local teams
  • record commentary for websites or internet radio stations
  • volunteer for community, hospital or student radio, or TV
  • get a placement or internship

In the UK, large broadcasters like the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 offer work experience placements, insight and talent days.

Working Hours and Environment:

Your working week may be long and irregular. You’ll make live or recorded commentaries at sporting events, which can take place during the day, in the evening or at the weekend.

Your environment will depend on the kind of event you’re commentating on. You may be working outdoors in all weathers or in indoor arenas.

You could travel around the country or overseas.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, you could become a studio-based presenter, move into programme making and producing, management, or written sports reporting.