Jonathan Pearce choking ‘most dramatic moment’ in drab half of World Cup clash

BBC presenter Mark Chapman remarkably joked that Jonathan Pearce choking during commentary was the "most dramatic moment" of a drab 45 minutes of World Cup football.

In a cagey final Group D contest, Australia needed to avoid defeat at the hands of Denmark in order to reach the knockout stages for only the second time in their history, last achieving the feat back in 2006.

But after a first-half snore-fest, Chapman hilariously jibbed that the 0-0 affair was so dull that the only entertaining aspect was Pearce's coughing fit, with co-commentator Dion Dublin needing to take charge whilst he sorted out his vocals.

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Thankfully Pearce's choking was not picked up on the BBC microphone but the commentator did heap applause on Dublin for maintaining professional standards when he had cleared his throat.

"Thanks for helping out there, I was choking to death," joked Pearce on BBC Two, in the 37th minute of the match. "You might have heard me coughing in the background. Thanks, pal"

The ex-Aston Villa striker replied: "No problem mate, that's what I'm here for." Pearce's coughing fit was then picked up at half-time by Chapman, who couldn't resist a sly jibe in his colleague's direction.

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"Very philosophical Jonathan," said Chapman after Pearce had rounded up the first-half proceedings. "Probably the most dramatic moment of that first half was him choking."

Fortunately, the second half at Al Janoub Stadium was far more enthralling with Mathew Leckie's low strike sending Australia into the last 16 of the competition, as well as speaking wild celebrations from thousands of Socceroo supporters gathered at Federation Square in Melbourne.

Graham Arnold's men will now face Argentina on Saturday (December 3) for a place in the quarter-finals of the competition after Lionel Messi' and co sealed top spot in Group C.


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