Phil Vickery’s tips for creating the big game atmosphere at home



He may not be working his magic on the pitch these days, but rugby legend Phil Vickery knows how to get close to action from the comfort of his own home

When it comes to watching sport at home on TV, rugby legend Phil Vickery has things down to a fine art.

Read on to find out how you can follow your favourite teams like the pros from the comfort of your own front room. 

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With the TVs of today, how easy is it to create that big stadium atmosphere at home?

I think without doubt being at the stadium is an awesome feeling. It’s the ultimate – you want to be there. But I think now with the TVs and the sound quality and the picture quality, being at home and really getting involved, almost feeling part of the occasion, has never been so good.

How important is TV size in creating that feeling of being right there in the action?

I think to try and create the big game atmosphere in your living room or in your kitchen the TV is imperative. And the bigger the TV, the better that picture quality, the better the sound, the better the atmosphere, the more you’re involved, the more people you can get in around and watch it. And I think it creates a fantastic opportunity to really celebrate sport and particularly rugby.

What difference does watching on a top-quality TV make on match days?

It makes me feel excited. The big days, those big matches, you want to be watching on the best TV. I can’t take to the field any more, but the one thing I can do is get passionate about it, get behind the team, but at home in my surroundings, in my lounge, getting nervous, getting excited – come on the boys!

Do depth and detail help you to feel immersed in the action?

I think depth and detail are critical when watching TV, particularly when watching sport because you want to be part of it. By watching, it envelops you – that atmosphere, the sound, the colours, the tension. It’s fantastic –really, really love it.

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This year the rugby is being broadcast in 4K. How do you think having four times more detail in the picture could make watching rugby better?

It’s exciting that it’s being delivered it 4K. Watching it on the TV, the detail which it’s delivering now is truly amazing and I think it will have a huge impact on the way we watch sport, in your lounge, being able to watch in it that kind of detail – wow, what a difference that’s going to make!

What about seeing those contentious decisions at home?

I think the contentious issues around sport are based around referee decisions – looking at was it in, was it out, was the ball over, was the foot in, was it out, was it a try. And with the detail these TVs are going to be able to deliver, I’m actually glad I’m not a referee because I think we’re going to be able to see it better than anybody else. 

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