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Broadcaster Phillip Leishman dies

Last updated 06:23 26/02/2013

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Veteran broadcaster Phillip Leishman has died surrounded by his family after battling an agressive form of cancer.

Leishman, 61, was operated on for a a brain tumour in March 2012. The operation was a success but the cancer recently returned.

Leishman, once host of Wheel of Fortune, but most recently seen appearing on popular television production the HSBC Golf Club, first appeared on Dunedin regional station DNTV2 in the 1970s.

From there he moved to the nightly network bulletin as a sports news presenter, covering Olympic and Commonwealth Games between 1976 and 1998.

He worked on Turf Talk with Glynn Tucker in the mid to late 1970s, and hosted 1250 episodes of quiz show Wheel of Fortune alongside Lana Coc-Kroft in the early and mid 1990s.

In 1997 he joined up with journalist Phil Smith to form company Uplink, now Sportinc, to produce the golf programme which he has described as probably his most satisfying role.

In 2011 he was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to broadcasting and the community.

Leishman said in an interview late last year that he wanted to be remembered as a "natural broadcaster" who loved his job.

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