Phil Dil­lon

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Com­men­ta­tors hope they have the right com­bi­na­tion as they pre­pare to tackle World Cup cov­er­age, writes

CRAIG Moore is hop­ing that the SBS cov­er­age of the World Cup in Rus­sia can in­spire the next gen­er­a­tion of Aus­tralian foot­ball stars.

Moore, who was part of the only Aus­tralian team to reach the knock­out stages of the fi­nals in Ger­many in 2006, will be along­side com­men­ta­tor David Basheer when the Socceroos go up against France (June 16), Den­mark (June 21) and Peru (June 27) – all live on SBS.

The for­mer de­fender is look­ing for­ward to work­ing along­side Basheer again as he spreads the word about the beau­ti­ful game to Aus­tralia.

“I have done a cou­ple of grand fi­nals (with Basheer), so it’s cer­tainly not new to me,” he says.

“With SBS the of­fi­cial broad­caster of the World Cup, it seemed like a per­fect fit and a great op­por­tu­nity.

“The com­men­tary I re­ally en­joy be­cause you are talk­ing about the game as you see it. I am ob­vi­ously not lead­ing, so I am com­ing in with lit­tle bits of de­tail.

“I think it’s im­por­tant you have the right com­bi­na­tion. I have worked with David Basheer be­fore. He’s ex­cel­lent and we seem to bounce off each other re­ally well, so it should work well.”

Moore, who scored a penalty as the Socceroos drew 2-2 with Croa­tia in Stuttgart to progress to the last 16 of the 2006 World Cup, said he was look­ing for­ward to the 2018 com­pe­ti­tion in Rus­sia.

He also says it is im­por­tant that ev­ery­one has the chance to watch the Socceroos and the world’s best play­ers on free-to-air tele­vi­sion.

“Not ev­ery­one has the abil­ity to be able to pur­chase and watch pay TV,” Moore, who will fly to Rus­sia this week, says.

“It’s great be­cause it does get our prod­uct out there. We have the op­por­tu­nity to hit so many more num­bers and to en­gage with so many more young kids and fam­i­lies. That’s a fan­tas­tic part of this World Cup, it’s live it’s free and it’s HD.

“SBS will put on a fan­tas­tic event. Ob­vi­ously it will be dic­tated by the teams and play­ers and how well they en­ter­tain us all but it’s fan­tas­tic that ev­ery­one has the op­por­tu­nity to watch it.

“The time dif­fer­ence could be a chal­lenge but the ded­i­cated ones will be up and cer­tainly won’t want to miss a trick watch­ing games in the early hours.”

For the record, Moore says al­though the Socceroos group is a tough one, with France, Den­mark and Peru all ranked in the top 15 coun­tries in the world, Aus­tralia is ca­pa­ble of qual­i­fy­ing for the knock-out stages for only the sec­ond time.

“To me it’s a re­ally dif­fi­cult group,” he says. “But you never know what can hap­pen at a World Cup.

“If we play well and take our chances then any­thing is pos­si­ble.”

SBS will present the match of the day, ev­ery day of the World Cup live and in HD with high­lights and anal­y­sis of all 64 matches on TV and on­line.

FIFA WORLD CUP – SBS – THURS­DAY AT 10.30PM

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