May 24, 2007

Europe

ECBtv available across Europe

Martin Williamson

The European Cricket Council has announced a deal with ICC Europe, ECB and Premium TV to make ECBtv available on subscription throughout Europe.

In many areas of Europe there is no access to TV highlights of matches, and this move looks to make coverage accessible to everyone.

"ECB is pleased and excited to be able to offer Europe’s cricket fans access to ECBtv and it is hoped that it will take the game to previously uncharted areas, inspiring people to get involved in this great sport,” Richard Holdsworth, the ICC’s regional development manager, said. "Delivering live video coverage via broadband to European territories has brought people closer to the game than ever before.”

ECBtv shows Test and one-day international matches live to certain territories, as well as match highlights, exclusive interviews, press conferences, coaching master classes and many other features to a global audience. Live streams start at £2.99. Click here for full details.

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Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

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Posted by JB on (May 26, 2007, 17:37 GMT)

This is potentially a great service - although I wish you could find out more about the cost of the various services before signing up. The site is a bit weak in this respect.

Posted by Angus on (May 26, 2007, 16:59 GMT)

I clicked on the site for full details, and there are none.

When this is up and running, and the technology improves and becomes more affordable, it will make a huge difference to the development of cricket on the continent. I do hope the Russian and Belorussian governments don't ban it.

Posted by Pavel Iosad on (May 25, 2007, 21:16 GMT)

Well, from my egotistical perspective here in Russia this is simply fabulous news, since the only cricket on Russian TV is a snippet on EuroNews once in a couple of years or so.

Posted by Puff on (May 25, 2007, 9:22 GMT)

Give the guys a break. A few years ago you couldn't see anything on the web and now you can at least follow the highlights.

Posted by Nafi Karim on (May 25, 2007, 1:25 GMT)

Why do people have to take cheap shots at the ICC all the time without not really knowing much about what they are talking about? The reason why there isn't much promotions of cricket here in the US is because we have a dysfunctional board right now (USACA), although they did do a good thing in New York where cricket is going to be played as a varsity sport. There's is no short-sightedness by the ICC involved here, they had put a lot of money in the USA project but it went to waste because of internal problems of USACA. So I don't know why people always have to have a go at the ICC even though they are not always the ones to be blamed. And the reason I guess is, the media including cricinfo does that a lot of times.

Anyways, people are so fast to have a go at the ICC but why can not they just look and you'll find willow.tv where you can watch the games here in the US.

Posted by Nik Patel on (May 25, 2007, 1:02 GMT)

The ECB has a deal with ECHOSTAR DISH Network. The broadband coverage in US is provided by willow tv. The Website is www.willow.tv

Posted by Matt on (May 24, 2007, 21:39 GMT)

I agree with Frank and Jim. It just plain stinks that the service is not available in the US. Stinks for cricket fans and stinks for the sport in general.

EDITOR - To reiterate, this service cannot be provided to the USA as separate deals have been done to sell highlights to satellite and cable broadcasters. The value if sales to them would plummet if the highlights were readily available over the internet.

While I sympathise, commercial factors will win out.

Posted by Jim Garner on (May 24, 2007, 20:42 GMT)

The ECBtv service or its equivalent should be available in North America, potentially the biggest cash cow available for cricket.

The ICC is doing a lousy job promoting cricket in North America.

We have a chicken-and-egg situation here. Cricket cannot collect mass-audience revenues without promotion and it will not get a mass (or even substantial) audience without first showing said audience a free sample of what cricket is all about.

Baseball, hockey, tennis, golf, football (soccer and American) are all available live on sponsored shows and these sports return rich rewards to the advertiser. Cricket just plain has the wrong commercial policy.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Martin Williamson
Executive editor Martin Williamson joined the Wisden website in its planning stages in 2001 after failing to make his millions in the internet boom when managing editor of Sportal. Before that he was in charge of Sky Sports Online and helped launch and run Sky News Online. With a preference for all things old (except his wife and children), he has recently confounded colleagues by displaying an uncharacteristic fondness for Twenty20 cricket. His enthusiasm for the game is sadly not matched by his ability, but he remains convinced that he might be a late developer and perseveres in the hope of an England call-up with his middle-order batting and non-spinning offbreaks. He is now managing editor of ESPN EMEA Digital Group as well as his Cricinfo responsibilities.

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