Crusader Ellis will be dishing out the hits

GEORGINA STYLIANOU
Last updated 05:00 02/02/2013

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What do Dirty Dancing, The Notebook and Westlife have in common? Crusaders halfback Andy Ellis loves them.

These little snippets are among the things Classic Hits listeners might learn when Ellis starts as a breakfast show co-host on Monday.

Ellis, 28, has been known for his rugby skills and his entries to the Ellerslie International Flower Show. On Monday he becomes a broadcaster, adding to his already busy schedule.

On the first day of his new show, he will face 12-hour days, starting before 6am and finishing after rugby training.

Ellis was approached by The Radio Network and after "taking some time to let it sink in" decided he wanted to dive into a radio career.

"It will be busy and I know it will have its challenges ... I'll be getting up pretty early to get here [Classic Hits] by 6.30am."

Ellis, who rides a scooter worth about $800, said he would finish the breakfast show at 8.30am and then head straight to rugby training, which starts at 9am and finishes at 5pm.

The Crusaders usually train six days a week, he said.

Sunday would be dedicated to "chilling and family" and early nights would be required.

Although Ellis may play hard on the field, Classic Hits breakfast hosts A J Funnell and Chloe Emirali revealed he had a softer side.

"He loves romantic comedy movies ... we just thought it was hilarious. And The Notebook is one of his favourite films," Funnell said.

"I just have this image in my head of Andy finishing a game on a Saturday, jumping in the shower and then heading home and popping The Notebook on."

Funnell and Emirali said Ellis was "a natural" on the air but were both looking forward to throwing a few challenges his way.

Ellis, who is also a keen landscape gardener, said rugby would continue to be his "number one priority" and The Radio Network had agreed to be flexible with his hours.

He said Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder had been "very supportive" of his move to broadcasting, as had his family.

"We'll just see how it goes ... I could be terrible at it, who knows?" he said.

"I've been talking s..t for about 10 years though so it shouldn't be too different," he joked.

When asked what his favourite music was Ellis said: "Anything I can sing along to really ... I like upbeat stuff and old pop."

Irish boyband Westlife, the soundtrack to Dirty Dancing and Tom Petty's Free Falling were among his favourites. If he could interview anyone on Classic Hits, it would be David Beckham and his wife Victoria.

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"I don't really know what I'd ask them though ... but I would ask Victoria what David was like as a lover.

"That would be one for the ladies obviously, not for me."

- The Press

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