Jonathan ‘Aggers’ Agnew, MBE, DL, went from first class cricketer to master broadcaster, garnering many awards and the sobriquet: ‘the voice of cricket’. His interest in the sport was sparked at a young age when he would practice bowling in his back garden for hours, encouraged by his father; a keen amateur.
As a fast bowler with Leicestershire, in 1987 he earned the coveted accolade of having taken 100 first-class wickets in an English cricket season, and by this point was already combining a career as a player with a career as a commentator, working in local radio. He formally retired from playing professional cricket in 1990 and joined Test Match Special in 1991. He was made Deputy Lieutenant of Leicestershire in 2017 and awarded his MBE two year later for services to broadcasting. About to embark upon a speaking tour across the UK with Aussie bowling legend, Glenn McGrath, we wanted to find out
What Makes Jonathan…
Walking my spaniels on a warm, sunny morning and enjoying the countryside wildlife as we go.
Leaving home for another long cricket tour, usually of two months or more. I have been doing it for over 30 years now and it gets harder every time.
Writing obituaries of friends and colleagues, which is a necessary but very emotional part of my job. Can’t help but consider your own mortality in that situation.
Sitting behind a microphone at a cricket ground. I am naturally an introverted person but broadcasting brings out an inner positivity and, when it goes well, mischievous humour.
Any situation in which someone has been dealt with unfairly. It was the lesson rammed home to me in my childhood by my father. We all make mistakes and get things wrong but respect for one another is paramount.
That lovely warm embrace that welcomes me home after a long tour. There really is nothing like it.
Test Match Special Live – The Ashes Special, with Jonathan Agnew and Glenn McGrath, tours the UK from 5 April. They will be at New Theatre, Oxford on 6 April, Waterside, Aylesbury on 11 April and the Hexagon in Reading on 4 May. For tickets and venue information visit