SIR Roger Moore has hailed 007 rival Sir Sean Connery on his 80th birthday - calling him the GREATEST ever James Bond.
Smooth-talking Moore, 82, paid tribute to legend Sir Sean as the Scot celebrates his milestone today.
Movie buffs have argued for years over which actor best portrayed writer Ian Fleming's spy on the big screen.
But yesterday Moore - who took on the Bond role after Connery's sixth appearance as the agent in Diamonds Are Forever - told the Scottish Sun: "I would like to say a big 'thank you' to Sean for having been the best Bond and really launching the Bond phenomenon.
"And an even bigger thank you for having left after Diamonds, leaving me the chance to don the tuxedo, pack a Walther PPK, and romance many beautiful Bond ladies."
Sir Sean starred in six of the first seven 007 flicks. Moore acted in the next seven. He and wife Kristina sent their "best wishes" to Sir Sean, adding: "Send us a piece of the cake!" Other pals toasted Edinburgh-born Sir Sean on his 80th. F1 legend Sir Jackie Stewart called him "a great ambassador to our nation".
First Minister Alex Salmond added: "Scotland can be proud." And tycoon Donald Trump said: "You may be famous for being 007, but in my book you're No1."
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