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Legendary sportscaster Yannis Diakogiannis passes

Featured Legendary sportscaster Yannis Diakogiannis passes

Greek journalism mourns legendary journalist, Yiannis Diakogiannis, who passed away on Tuesday.

The journalist, author, radio commentator and sportscaster has passed away at the age of 91.

Yiannis Diakogiannis is considered by many to be the top of the genre - and not without reason - due to his extensive knowledge of classical sports as well as football, his depth of broadcasting and the smoothness of his style.

Man and legend Yiannis Diakogiannis

Yiannis Diakogiannis was born in Athens where he was involved in sports since his teenage years, with a particular fondness for track and field. He studied music in France, but journalism eventually won him over.

He covered many top events as a sportscaster, including football World Cups (starting with the 1954 one in Switzerland and ending with the 1998 one in France), international matches and world championships in athletics, final matches of inter-club European football events (such as the Champions Cup  in 1971 between Ajax and Panathinaikos) and others.

In 2004 he was a commentator in the matches of the National men's football team in the Pan-European football championship when our representative group also won the trophy.

From September 1966 to 1983 he was the main presenter of the weekly sports television show "Sports Sunday" (originally "Sports News"), while in September 1969 he presented the 9th European Athletics Championship, which was held at the "Georgios Karaiskakis" Stadium and was the first broadcast of athletics competitions by a Greek television crew.

He also worked at a private sports reporting center as a journalism teacher. Among his works stand out the four-volume "100 Years of Football" (Militos, 2006), "60 Years of the World Cup" (Livanis, 1990), "The Great Figures of Sports" (Kaktos, 1979) etc. He was also a producer of music radio shows. The late journalist Rika Vaiani was his adopted daughter (adopted).

He was the first to be honored for his contribution in general with the "Eleni Vlachou" award in 2003, as a journalist of "Neon". He is probably the only Greek sports journalist whose surname was included in the lyrics of a song, specifically in "The match begins" composed and performed by Loukianos Kilaidonis in 1979.

Giannis Diakogiannis is a fan of Panathinaikos, something that was widely known in journalistic circles. In January 2017, Diakogiannis publicly admitted for the first time that he is a fan of Panathinaikos, at an event of the Municipality of Vyronas for the presentation of the book of the former football player Dimitris Theofanis. Diakogiannis declared: "I am Panathinaikos, I am Athenian, I am Panathinaikos. I have met Apostolos Nikolaidis".