Bob Hayes, the former Sun deputy sports editor, died on Wednesday, aged 67, after a short battle against cancer. Friend and colleague DAVE KIDD, The Sun’s chief sports writer, has given us permission to re-print his tribute.
Bob was a wonderful friend and colleague, whose sledgehammer wit made him a legend of our trade.
For more than a quarter of a century, he illuminated these pages with a rare genius for headline writing and the sharpest of journalistic instincts.
He reported on football for us until March and clubs he often covered — Wycombe, Northampton and MK Dons — all tweeted their condolences.
Bob (left) was a mascot at the 1966 World Cup, a QPR supporter, an avid golfer who played a key role in the emergence of Ryder Cup star Ian Poulter and a music lover who had a jukebox in his Leighton Buzzard home.
Several ‘Bob stories’ were still being swapped in the office only this week, by pals who had no idea he was even ill.
#MKDons is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of journalist Bob Hayes, who was a regular at Stadium MK in recent years.
Our thoughts are with his friends and family.
— MK Dons (@MKDonsFC) September 3, 2020
One anecdote came from 2009, when Bob was running the sports desk and had taken a break as the story broke, close to deadline, that Tiger Woods had crashed his car during his marriage break-up.
When Bob sauntered back, a panicked colleague told him: “We need to rip up the back page — Tiger has driven into a tree!”
Bob retorted: “Don’t worry, he’s the best golfer in the world, he’ll still get out and make par… ”
Bob died after a short battle with cancer.
Our deepest condolences go to his wife Lynn, their three daughters and four grandchildren.
Rest in peace, Bob.