Jamie Aitchison, commissioning editor for sport at Channel 4, denied the 73-year-old presenter’s claim that his age cost him his job.
He said the station wanted a more serious and inclusive show and accused McCririck of hogging the limelight from his fellow presenters “because he loved the camera”.
McCririck – who is challenging the broadcaster and TV production company IMG Media Limited – was seen as “unappealing and irritating”.
Mr Aitchison said in his witness statement: “John McCririck was considered to have a pantomime style of exaggerated delivery, which was incongruous with the more serious, measured and journalistic style proposed for the programme from 2013.”
He said he was advised by senior executives across the industry not to use McCririck on the new show. He went on: “I would be foolish to ignore that kind of expertise.”