Key Points:

Veteran sports broadcasters Keith Quinn, John McBeth and Geoff Bryan have been given the boot by TVNZ - then invited to compete for a newly created position.

The trio were officially told on Monday their jobs had been "dis-established".

Between 140 and 160 employees have lost their jobs in the latest round of restructuring at the state broadcaster.

But the veteran trio, who have decades of broadcasting experience between them, can apply for a new sports presenter/producer position based in Auckland.

Quinn, who will leave in mid-August, told the Herald yesterday he would not be applying for the new role, because he was based in Wellington.

He was feeling upbeat and positive despite being laid off.

"I'm a young man on the way up," the 60-year-old joked.

"It's been in the pipeline ... and I've been fairly treated."

Quinn joined TVNZ in 1965 and had his first TV broadcast in 1968.

"It's been great. I'm not at all gloomy about it ... it's not the end. Why does it have to be the end? It's just a re-start."

TVNZ spokeswoman Megan Richards said the broadcaster could not justify the three full-time positions any longer due to the loss of screening rights of major sporting events.

Quinn, who hopes to work for TVNZ as a freelance, will head a tour party to the Rugby World Cup in France in September.

Geoff Bryan, who moved from radio to television in the late eighties and has anchored numerous international sporting events, had no comment.

John McBeth, who is Wellington-based, is due back this week from Valencia where he has been anchoring TVNZ's America's Cup coverage. He joined TVNZ in 1993 as a commentator and presenter.