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ESPN, England and Wales Cricket Board enter into multi-platform deal

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | June 05, 2012
The network has acquired the rights for Asia and a few territories of North Africa. ESS will broadcast more than 300 days of live international content, comprising 47 test matches, 63 ODIs and 15 T20 games.

ESPN-STAR Sports (ESS), England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have entered into a new deal which gives ESS broadcast rights for home and domestic cricket events for seven years. The deal, covering matches during 2013-2019, is worth $200 million.

The earlier five year deal between the two companies, valued at $80 million, included only one India series.

ESPN Star Sports

The current agreement will cover two major events, including the next two tours of the Indian team to England, and the three Ashes series (2013, 2015 and 2019).

The deal includes the broadcast and media rights for online, mobile and radio, along with television. The network has acquired the rights for Asia and few territories of North Africa. ESS will broadcast over 300 days of live international content, comprising 47 test matches, 63 ODIs (one-day internationals) and 15 T20 (twenty-twenty) games.

ECB

David Collier, CEO, ECB, says, "Recently, since all sports are facing tough competition for funding streams, this is expected to provide an important source of additional revenue for funding the development of our game at all levels. Also, TV audiences for cricket are expanding rapidly in Asia and West Asia and we look forward to working closely with ESS to give both our international and county teams the widest possible TV exposure over the next seven years."

Interestingly, ESS had renewed its Cricket Australia deal for five years in December, 2011. With these, in the next 13 months, ESS will broadcast more than 400 match days of cricket, starting with the ongoing West Indies tour of England, and going on to ICC Champions Trophy in England in June, 2013.

Other key events which are also in ESS' kitty are two India series and the 'Clash of the Titans' (the tri-series featuring India, Australia and England, which is scheduled right before the ICC World Cup in 2015).

Subsequently, India will visit Australia for seven ODIs and two T20 matches in 2015-16. With another update, the recently bagged rights for the India cricket (BCCI) by STAR will be sub-licensed to ESS.

Major test playing nations will be competing in England, including New Zealand, Australia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, West Indies and South Africa.

As part of the ECB deal, ESS will also broadcast 60 days of ECB's domestic cricket every year, including the Friends Life T20 competition, the CB40 Tournament, the LV County Championship, as well as England Lions, England Under 19s and England Women's cricket.

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