Moving Rob Burrow documentary about the Leeds Rhinos legend's battle with motor neurone disease nominated for National Television Award

The heartbreaking documentary about Leeds Rhino legend Rob Burrow's battle with motor neurone disease has been shortlisted for a National Television Award.

By Tony Gardner
Tuesday, 17th August 2021, 4:45 am
Rob Burrow was diagnosed with MND two years after his Leeds Rhinos career ended.
Rob Burrow was diagnosed with MND two years after his Leeds Rhinos career ended.

The BBC programme, Rob Burrow: My Year with MND, which was aired last autumn, has been nominated for the prestigious prize in the Authored Documentary category.

The star-studded ceremony will be broadcast live on ITV on September 9 with new NTA host Joel Dommett leading the celebrations.

The half-hour documentary featured the 5ft 5in former scrum-half as he displayed the same spirit in his fight against the incurable disease as he showed in adversity on the rugby field.

The BBC documentary Rob Burrow: My Year with MND has been nominated for a National Television Award.

The programme followed Rob's trips to see the specialist and included moving interviews with his parents, wife Lindsey – his childhood sweetheart – and former teammates Kevin Sinfield and Barrie McDermott.

Rob, who has three young children, was prompted to raise awareness for research into the condition, including regular appearances on BBC Breakfast, after a meeting with former Scotland rugby union international and fellow MND sufferer Doddie Weir.

The 38-year-old was diagnosed with the degenerative disease barely two years after ending his stellar playing career by helping Leeds to a record-extending eighth Super League Grand Final in 2017.

Five famous faces who showcased their personal plights are competing for the inaugural Authored Documentary award.

The powerful state-of-the-nation shows are Kate Garraway: Finding Derek, Katie Price: Harvey and Me, Rob Burrow: My Year with MND, Roman Kemp: Our Silent Emergency, plus a programme by a man whose campaigning made political waves: Marcus Rashford Feeding Britain's Children.

BBC Breakfast’s Sally Nugent, who presented the programmes on Rob and Marcus Rashford, said: “It has been a privilege to follow both Rob and Marcus’ inspirational journeys and to cover two incredibly important subject matters in these documentaries.

"To be nominated twice for such a prestigious award means the world to myself and the BBC Breakfast and Sport teams.”

Richard Frediani, BBC Breakfast Editor said: “BBC Breakfast has closely followed Marcus Rashford’s quest to end child food poverty and Rob Burrow’s mission to raise awareness of MND throughout 2020 and beyond, so it was the next natural step to explore their remarkable stories in more depth.

"I am absolutely delighted to receive two NTA nominations and I’m incredibly proud of the team behind the films.”

Marcus Rashford: Feeding Britain’s Children and Rob Burrow: My Year with MND were both co-productions between BBC Breakfast and BBC Sport.

The NTAs are publicly voted and all categories can be viewed here: