ESPN-STAR Sports has readied its two channels, STAR Sports 2 and STAR Cricket, with a slew of production and programming initiatives for the upcoming live coverage of all the matches of the ICC Champions Trophy 2013.
The network has also put in place a star-studded commentary panel with representation from all the participating countries. The list of commentators include cricketing superstars such as Sourav Ganguly, Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev, Navjot Singh Sidhu, Sanjay Manjrekar, Arun Lal and Akash Chopra (India); Nasser Hussain and Michael Atherton (England); Shane Warne and Tom Moody (Australia); Michael Holding (West Indies); Ramiz Raja and Wasim Akram (Pakistan); Russell Arnold (Sri Lanka); Pommie Mbangwa (Zimbabwe) and Simon Doull (New Zealand).
Seasoned analysts like Harsha Bhogle and Jatin Sapru will undertake the hosting duties for the English and Hindi telecast of this blockbuster event.
Speaking about the initiatives planned, Vijay Rajput, chief operating officer, ESPN Software India, says, "We will leave no stone unturned to make this tournament an unprecedented viewing experience and are working with the ICC to deliver a world-class telecast for viewers worldwide. With a range of special programming, on-air enhancements, brand new camera angles, and analysts comprising some of the great names of international cricket, we intend to take fan engagement to a new level by redefining the way international cricket has been showcased till date."
Besides these, the channels will add innovations like UltraCam and StarCam 360 within the live telecast. UltraCam will bring to viewers super-slow, sharper and nuanced imagery. StarCam 360 will give viewers never-seen-before 360-degree camera angles and panoramic views of key match moments. STAR Cricket and STAR Sports 2 intend to make StarCam 360 a regular feature in international cricket going forward, by introducing this technology in the biggest cricket tournament of the year.
Besides showcasing the live action, the channels have also rechristened the central wrap-around show as 'Cricket Live'. Cricket Live will contain various innovative segments and features such as 'Masterclass', 'Faceoff', 'Down the Memory Lane' and 'In the Nets'.
The 'Face-off' segment will see each commentator arguing for his national team's strengths. In 'Masterclass', commentators will coach the viewer and give tips on how to improve their understanding of the game. 'In the Nets' will give detailed coverage of how players get ready for the game, while commentators will relive their memories/experiences of previous English tours in 'Down the Memory Lane'.