The iconic quiz show celebrated its 50th anniversary in January. Barker, Dawson andTufnell have been told of the shock decision which will leave their millions of fans disappointed. Sources say the series will return with a new team.

The trio have already recorded 10 episodes, with the first one broadcast on Friday night two weeks ago.

They will record their last series in charge later this month, with their final episodes to be broadcast next year.

A BBC spokesman last night said: “We would like to thank Sue for her enormous contribution as the show’s longest reigning host over the last 23 years, and Matt and Phil for their excellent team captaincy over 16 and 12 years respectively.

“Together they have ensured A Question Of Sport remains a firm favourite with the BBC One audience.”The show, first broadcast in 1970, has been hosted by the former tennis professional for 23 years since she took over from David Coleman in 1997. 

Barker said recently: “QoS has been such a huge part of my life – from watching it with my family growing up through my tennis-playing days and then, of course, as the presenter.”

The BBC also dealt another blow to viewers by confirming Strictly Blackpool will not go ahead this year.

It is a key stage in the series where contestants usually head to the famousTower Ballroom during the second half of the contest.

The BBC confirmed the show instead would pay tribute to the venue from the studio in Elstree, in Hertfordshire.

A BBC spokeswoman said: “Blackpool is a milestone in every series of Strictly that our audience, our celebs and professional dancers look forward to.

“Whilst we’ll be unable to physically go to Blackpool this series, we’ll still be celebrating this iconic venue and bringing it to life from our studio in Elstree.”

The BBC One programme has filmed at the venue since 2004.



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