In his trademark gesticulations, Bob Roll injured his hands recently, as he described the sprint capping off the recent Tour of Flanders. In his patently passionate mannerisms, as his hands flailed, they inadvertently collided, fracturing Roll’s little “pinkie” and ring finger of his left hand as well as his right wrist.
With both hands now immobilized in casts, it was originally feared that Roll would be rendered mute and therefore unable to fulfill his duties as a commentator on Versus.
Fellow commentators Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen expressed concern. “Like a torn ligament to a cyclist, this type of injury can be devastating to a commentator’s career—especially to someone of Bob’s…er,…'style',” explains Sherwen.
“He’s like an Italian grandmother on speed. If you’re within an arm’s length of Bob when he starts explaining a race, if you’re not careful, you could lose an eye.”
Roll is confident in a full recovery. “I’ll be alright. I’ll just have to talk a little bit slower and softer for a while. It’ll be hard—especially with Paris-Roubaix coming up, but I think I can manage.”
Roll was then suddenly distracted by a video of the recent Ghent-Wevelgem finale and showered the room with splintering fiberglass—shattering both casts as he began to explain the race dynamics.