Indian Premier League 2010 March 4, 2010

ITV bags IPL rights in UK

Cricinfo staff
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Cricket coverage in the UK will return to free-to-air television with ITV getting rights to broadcast the IPL for the 2010 season. The broadcaster will show live all the matches on ITV4 - one of its digital channels - from the feed supplied by Sony and will employ its own studio experts.

The IPL, which was without a UK broadcaster following the collapse of Setanta last year, will have a specialist section on the ITV website and has the right to webcast matches. The latest deal follows the YouTube-IPL tieup in January, whereby the internet channel will webcast live IPL matches globally.

Lalit Modi, the IPL commissioner, said, "This is a hugely significant deal for the IPL and ideally suited to the British passion for both cricket and entertainment."

"In only two years, the IPL has already established itself as one of the world's most high-profile and exciting sports events, which attracts some of the very best cricketers from around the globe," said Zai Bennett, ITV's director of digital channels and acquisitions. "It is an exciting acquisition for one of the UK's fastest growing digital channels and we're delighted to be able to offer the whole tournament free-to-air to our viewers."

The move also comes at a time when the ECB is fighting the listing of the home Ashes to be shown on terrestrial television, which they fear would lead to a major cut in funding. The only cricket previously available free-to-air in the UK is Five's highlights show during Tests and one-day internationals, while all international and domestic action is live on Sky Sports.

The third season of the IPL starts on March 12 and runs for 45 days.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • critic12345 on March 9, 2010, 4:45 GMT

    Modi seems to be making a consious effort to increase the reach of IPL. IPL is shown in paid channels in India, while in other countries, shown in free to air channles.In Australia , it is shown in Channel One (free to air sports channel) & now in in England , its ITV. Unlike Australia, the braodcasters in England have a problem. In australia, the matches are shown at the dead night,so the biggie foxsports is not affected much. But in England, since it will be shown in evening, it could really affect Sky & ECB.

  • on March 6, 2010, 21:09 GMT

    Cricket on the telly. happy days

  • paulsteve on March 6, 2010, 13:18 GMT

    hmm i agree wit you all...

  • Paul_JT on March 6, 2010, 10:48 GMT

    Well done and thank you Mr Modi. This move not only shows business savvy, free to view equals a greater audience and a higher value product - take note ECB with regards to homes Ashes Tests - but a challenge, with perhaps a little venom, towards the establishment Clarke (ECB) and Sky hegemony. Now what would really get on Clarke and Sky's wick would be to present from Lords, rather than some bland ITV studio. I'm sure Mr Bradshaw (MCC) would oblige.

  • EddyM on March 6, 2010, 7:09 GMT

    India has 1 billion people, far more than australia. in terms of attendance per capita, IPL LOSES hands down. Cricketers are only going to india for the money. even then, people are pulling out because of scurity issues

  • Error-404_Page_not_found on March 6, 2010, 6:48 GMT

    Keep Dreaming Willmot. Aussies are again going out of T20 world cup in first round itself. And yes let me remind you there's a world cup next year too, hopefully Aussie building is complete by that time or else be ready for a thrashing in that too. We will see how u perform without "Hayden, Gilchrist, Symonds, Mcgrath and Warne". What I don't see is any player filling their shoes. And as far as IPL is concerned, Pakistani players were not part of IPL-09 too, which was a superhit in telivision rankings around the world. As far as Big Bash is concerned, it's a very good tournament, but nowhere close to IPL when it comes to Entertainment fan following and amount of international cricketers taking part in it. Opps I forgot telivision rankings, Big bash is not even 25% of IPL in terms of "Ground and Telivision" viewers.

  • on March 6, 2010, 0:54 GMT

    what about in us? on which channels we can see that?

  • Anneeq on March 5, 2010, 21:56 GMT

    wow, this is big news!! I would have thought ITV would have advertised it tho, at least.

  • EddyM on March 5, 2010, 20:40 GMT

    IPL didn't help Setanta and I don't think it will be any different for ITV4. You will maiinly get Indians and bored people watching. true cricket lovers wouldn't give two hoots.

  • sansean on March 5, 2010, 15:09 GMT

    well who cares about pakistani players not being in ipl, most of them are under performers especially the ball biter afridi, he is anything but boom boom just checkout his batting avg over the past few years, the only consistent player is umar gul who according to me is the best 20-20 bowler, if you have followed the various series pakistan has played you'll know what i mean, their players are under performers. IPL is going to be an extravaganza, should be fun, bring it on, the best international talents at display, its gonna be awesome.

  • critic12345 on March 9, 2010, 4:45 GMT

    Modi seems to be making a consious effort to increase the reach of IPL. IPL is shown in paid channels in India, while in other countries, shown in free to air channles.In Australia , it is shown in Channel One (free to air sports channel) & now in in England , its ITV. Unlike Australia, the braodcasters in England have a problem. In australia, the matches are shown at the dead night,so the biggie foxsports is not affected much. But in England, since it will be shown in evening, it could really affect Sky & ECB.

  • on March 6, 2010, 21:09 GMT

    Cricket on the telly. happy days

  • paulsteve on March 6, 2010, 13:18 GMT

    hmm i agree wit you all...

  • Paul_JT on March 6, 2010, 10:48 GMT

    Well done and thank you Mr Modi. This move not only shows business savvy, free to view equals a greater audience and a higher value product - take note ECB with regards to homes Ashes Tests - but a challenge, with perhaps a little venom, towards the establishment Clarke (ECB) and Sky hegemony. Now what would really get on Clarke and Sky's wick would be to present from Lords, rather than some bland ITV studio. I'm sure Mr Bradshaw (MCC) would oblige.

  • EddyM on March 6, 2010, 7:09 GMT

    India has 1 billion people, far more than australia. in terms of attendance per capita, IPL LOSES hands down. Cricketers are only going to india for the money. even then, people are pulling out because of scurity issues

  • Error-404_Page_not_found on March 6, 2010, 6:48 GMT

    Keep Dreaming Willmot. Aussies are again going out of T20 world cup in first round itself. And yes let me remind you there's a world cup next year too, hopefully Aussie building is complete by that time or else be ready for a thrashing in that too. We will see how u perform without "Hayden, Gilchrist, Symonds, Mcgrath and Warne". What I don't see is any player filling their shoes. And as far as IPL is concerned, Pakistani players were not part of IPL-09 too, which was a superhit in telivision rankings around the world. As far as Big Bash is concerned, it's a very good tournament, but nowhere close to IPL when it comes to Entertainment fan following and amount of international cricketers taking part in it. Opps I forgot telivision rankings, Big bash is not even 25% of IPL in terms of "Ground and Telivision" viewers.

  • on March 6, 2010, 0:54 GMT

    what about in us? on which channels we can see that?

  • Anneeq on March 5, 2010, 21:56 GMT

    wow, this is big news!! I would have thought ITV would have advertised it tho, at least.

  • EddyM on March 5, 2010, 20:40 GMT

    IPL didn't help Setanta and I don't think it will be any different for ITV4. You will maiinly get Indians and bored people watching. true cricket lovers wouldn't give two hoots.

  • sansean on March 5, 2010, 15:09 GMT

    well who cares about pakistani players not being in ipl, most of them are under performers especially the ball biter afridi, he is anything but boom boom just checkout his batting avg over the past few years, the only consistent player is umar gul who according to me is the best 20-20 bowler, if you have followed the various series pakistan has played you'll know what i mean, their players are under performers. IPL is going to be an extravaganza, should be fun, bring it on, the best international talents at display, its gonna be awesome.

  • on March 5, 2010, 14:10 GMT

    IPL auctions should have been handled in a more careful manner Mr.Modi. APART FROM THAT YOU HAVE BEEN A ROCKSTAR!!!! Good luck!!

  • on March 5, 2010, 12:23 GMT

    Thanks ITV. Best news for all cricket lovers in the UK. It becomes the duty of every sports lover to support those channels who still believe in providing free sports coverage.

  • alexbrowne on March 5, 2010, 10:10 GMT

    Setting Sun - ITV4 is on freeview and that is free to air as no subscription is payable. Some people may have to buy a set top box for about £20 but you also had to buy a television to receive the original "free" channels. In addition, areas such as the North West are already digital only and the whole country will be by 2012, so many people already have boxes.

    It's great news that it's on free to air, ITV4 will be able to make dedicated space for the matches which is better than the mainstream channels - let's not forget that C4 used to cut short its end of day analysis so that people could watch Hollyoaks. Here's hoping the IPL gets a bigger following in the UK. That said, I won't be rushing to cancel my sky sports subscription just yet.

  • Mahatma_of_Great_Britain on March 5, 2010, 8:49 GMT

    To SettingSun:

    I'm know IPL is on ITV4 It's only the minority of household at this age and time who's still using analogue TV, as majority has Sky, Virgin or Freeview box. Besides, those who hasn't got Freeview box can get it for as little as £20 (as opposed to £40/month for Sky).

    Those who hasn't got Sky, Virgin, Freeview (pretty much live in caves) then they can always watch IPL on YouTube (www.youtube.com/ipl). Hence, what IPL's filled every possible vacuum that would deprive cricket fans from watching cricketing maestro gathering together in a single tournament.

    Funny, in England, watching England's international match cost you £40/month but watching an INDIAN domestic tournament's free and that's exactly what would make ECB hot and bothered.

    It's a win-win situation for ITV (esp. when they're making loss and hence an opportunity to generate more viewing figure), fanbase (more exposture and more fans) and the game of cricket itself (for getting widest possible audience).

  • on March 5, 2010, 6:46 GMT

    That means its time to conquer England...last year it was South Africa...don't know what's his idea for Australia... :) Modi is expanding his IPL all over the world.....hats off for spreading the Indian League

  • willmot on March 5, 2010, 4:55 GMT

    1. Good news for all lovers of the big bash 2. Bad that the Pakistani players will be missing and unfortunately politicises and tarnishes the whole event. On this I wonder if Indian fans would follow an otherwise global event that had specifically omitted Indians on grounds other than merit,any official associated with this move ought to be hiding their head in shame. 3. Forget India/Pakistan , now they're taking this format of the game more seriously the aussies will win the next few 2020 world cups.

  • AJ_Tiger86 on March 5, 2010, 4:01 GMT

    This is all great news, but my only worry is Mandira Bedi is going to be a co-host. She is awful as a cricket presenter.

  • on March 4, 2010, 21:19 GMT

    This'll be right Cricket for the football lovers on the channel for football lovers. Theres one NOT to watch

  • SettingSun on March 4, 2010, 19:27 GMT

    @darsh2525. As I've said earlier, not everyone will get the IPL for free - many people will still have to pay some fee to get it in some way. Let's face it, ITV1 are not going to bump The Jeremy Kyle Show and This Morning for some Indian cricket, and it's going to be dumped on ITV4, probably. And if you don't have satellite, cable or Freeview then you will have to pay for the equipment to get it. So it's not strictly free-to-air, is it?

    Someone mentioned it's a blow to the ECB. It only will be if they put it on ITV1, which they probably won't. Having it on ITV4 is not going to have them shaking in their boots, really. Just goes to show that ITV must be really desperate for live sport right now. If they still had much live football then I guarantee they would never have bid for the IPL.

  • Mahatma_of_Great_Britain on March 4, 2010, 18:44 GMT

    This is simply an AWESOME news cos ITV is a terrestrial channel and hence EVERYONE receives it (no cable/sat sub needed). Such a deal helps expanding the fanbase even further.

    Following their last year's loss of £2.7 billion, only yesterday, ITV's announced profit of around £25 million, following cost-cutting. With IPL matches, ITV's profit can only go uphill in future.

    ECB must've been getting hot and bothered, considering that all England cricket matches are on Sky (costing £37) whilst all INDIAN Premier League matches are on free-to-air TV channel. Hence, through YouTube and ITV, IPL can reach more audience than county matches or even matches that insolves the England team.

    Since all matches are timed to best suit the Indian audience, I really hope there's highlight, so people here in Britain can watch it in the evening, after their working hours.

    Another feather on Lalit Modi's cap ??? Hell YES !!!

  • RajivT on March 4, 2010, 18:36 GMT

    To KYZA,

    You clearly have a grudge against Indians and claim that the Indians are prejudiced against the Pakistanis.

    Too bad you will be boycotting the IPL - it's entirely your loss as you will be missing high class entertainment with it being the only event in cricket where players from different countries play alongside each other in the same teams!

    I will definitely be watching the IPL! Great work ITV, let the games begin without the Pakistan players!

  • KTiwari on March 4, 2010, 17:47 GMT

    India beating Pakistan in the final of 20/20 worldcup in lovely carribean...

  • jeromedascorp on March 4, 2010, 17:25 GMT

    Based on the main article which spoke about the Youtube deal, the IPL will not be available for free in the USA. This is because of long term deals with Dish Network and DirecTV. Its too bad because a majority of cricket lovers simply cannot afford the price charged by direcTV and Dish Network. Hopefully in the future the US will see cricket on more affordable means. ESPN360 has been broadcasting Asia Cup and most Bangladesh Series. Lets hope that we will see more series involving Test Playing nations on ESPN360. Who knows maybe in about 5-10 yrs we will see the odd series on ESPN in the US.

  • manoftheseries on March 4, 2010, 16:40 GMT

    Well done ITV. Nice one.. IPL on free to air is excellent. Come on Chennai Super Kings.. Mr.KYZA-The world is watching.Cheer up dude.. We (Ind&Pak) are neighbours and once brothers afterall. Forget the politics enjoy the cricket.

  • on March 4, 2010, 16:31 GMT

    I think it should be worrying news for ECB. This deal might just create new cricket fans in UK for IPL but not necessarily for ECB run events (both domestic & International). ECB is already staring at possibility of having to adjust its home season every year based on CLT20 dates. They might choose not to send teams this year but if IPL grows in UK then ECB will be left with little choice. This is a shrewd move by IPL and I have the feeling ECB has missed the boat by only being reactionary since the launch of Twenty20 Cup.

  • sidbad on March 4, 2010, 16:13 GMT

    I really pity the general english public desperate to watch live english cricket. People in India are more fortunate. they get sky feed on star sports even though english cricket is of least interest to the indian public

  • ArjunPandit on March 4, 2010, 16:05 GMT

    Thank you very much Mr. Modi and keep this every year so we don't have to worry every year that which chennel is goning to show IPL, Love you men.

  • Doosra94 on March 4, 2010, 16:02 GMT

    It's good news as it's more convient to watch it on the tv. I hope they have better pundits than Setanta because Irani and Gough were awful.

  • nccricket on March 4, 2010, 15:31 GMT

    Isn't the IPL going to be on YouTube for free in the US?

  • AtulB on March 4, 2010, 15:17 GMT

    Regardless of how much we love to criticize Modi, this is by far better than our expectations, hats off Mr Modi and. We are ready , bring it on

  • SettingSun on March 4, 2010, 13:35 GMT

    Free-to-air, eh? Well, considering that hundreds of thousands of people in the UK still don't have access to Freeview or any cable packages carrying ITV 2, 3 or 4, it's not going to be 'free-to-air' to them, is it? Because I doubt very much ITV will be broadcasting it on their main channel. Nice try, but no cigar, Mr Bennett.

  • Lobo7 on March 4, 2010, 13:35 GMT

    Great Done ITV and Fantastic Lallya.

    I am amazed to read this news. Its treat to great cricket lovers. Why few are mouning here?

    Well done and lets enjoy this feast of great IPL tournament. Indians seems doing great everywhere..

    Lobo

  • on March 4, 2010, 13:22 GMT

    Oh and with regard to the youtube deal; even if this overrides youtube's rights in this country and ITV is the only provider, you can still stream ITV 4 free of charge through ITV's website so computer based cricket viewing will still be possible!

  • on March 4, 2010, 13:08 GMT

    This is fantastic news! At last, live cricket for anyone in the UK with a digibox. What a great move from the IPL and ITV. I do a lot of coaching work with young cricketers and the number of them who have never seen live cricket, or any professional cricket at all, always astounds me. At last here is something that will help to address that issue. Fingers crossed this will inspire a new generation of young players to take up and learn more about our fantastic game!

  • wanderer1 on March 4, 2010, 13:08 GMT

    Nothing personal against the IPL, but British Broadcasters should push more for England's cricket coverage during the summer months. That should be their main priority.

  • Alexk400 on March 4, 2010, 13:03 GMT

    Modi rocks. Modi for president!.

  • concerned_cricketer on March 4, 2010, 12:59 GMT

    This is very good news for people like me who's missed out on a lot of cricket after cricket was made exclusive to Sky in UK. For people who're renting, if the rules don't allow you to put up a dish on the roof, it's difficult to subscribe to Sky. With the compulsory contracts etc, if one moves home every 1.5 to 2 years, it becomes a difficult proposition to watch cricket other than at the gym or in a pub. This is very good news indeed.

  • KYZA on March 4, 2010, 12:57 GMT

    Good deal for the IPL amazing to get on to ITV one of our big channels, however as a PAKISTAN fan, I will be boycotting the IPL and will wait for Pakistan to hammer India again in the world 20/20, I know the political status between Pakistan and India is not good at present, but why call Pakistani players and then snub them, what a jok this IPL is, players only want to play due to big money they are looking for. Just to confirm I am English and live in England, India are always treating Pakistan team and players with prejudice, which is not a good look for Indian fans players or BCCI. Forget IPL Come on Pakistan in this years 20/20 world cup, how can India snub the worlds finest 20/20 players.

  • W2NTED on March 4, 2010, 12:38 GMT

    When IPL started I was a big fan of it, but latetly politics has been involved in it with regarding the exclusion of the pakistani players, which is not justice. So sorry but i dont care if ipl is live on itv i am not going to watch it. ITV broadcasting cricket a very big surprise.

  • nashpoka on March 4, 2010, 12:17 GMT

    I think now Modi has made it tough for ECB to argue against broadcasting ashes on free channels in UK.

  • TheSouthallBee on March 4, 2010, 12:11 GMT

    Well done ITV and Mr. Modi.

  • shivshankarb on March 4, 2010, 11:50 GMT

    Thank you Mr. Modi, that's very nice of you!

  • CricketPissek on March 4, 2010, 11:49 GMT

    excellent news... been waiting for ages to catch some cricket @ home :) what about that youtube deal though? I thought google was going to broadcast it free on youtube except in the States? is that still on as well? spoilt for choice for cricket in the UK?! my my! how the tide has turned

  • on March 4, 2010, 11:40 GMT

    I am an England cricket fan! when IPL started I was a big fan of it too. My second team of choice is Pakistan, as u can guess its the country of my Forefathers. I thought pak cricketers brought great fun to IPL specially playin alongside their Indian colleagues. There are millions of people in the world like me; Ive lost most of my interest in IPL since the departure of Pak players....I know many many others in england that have the same feeling. I guess I'd switching to skysports or practising cricket on my wii when IPL's on ITV...I will only watch it when KP & Morgan r playin tho hehe!

  • on March 4, 2010, 11:38 GMT

    IPL is making a very speedy progress worldwide!! NO surprises with success in India but worldwide was not going to be easy. like Dhoni for team India its Modi for IPL. Success guarunteed!!

  • on March 4, 2010, 11:22 GMT

    Very interesting development. It will be intriguing to see if any other major cricket can follow suit. It's a huge deal for the IPL to get that kind of exposure in the UK. Whether or not it captures the British imagination remains to be seen.

  • shafny on March 4, 2010, 11:04 GMT

    wow.... what a great news for cricket fans in uk. i was bit worried when they annonced that they going to broadcast in youtbe coz watching in pc is not like watching big screen tv. thanx to itv but please bring on good pandit dont even try to make the mistakes what setanta did.. as guest bringing theses compton and jujupieee cricketers they didnt do them self a favour. hope ITV will do the job.

  • pragmatist on March 4, 2010, 11:00 GMT

    This really is a surprise development, but a very positive one for cricket fans in the UK. I can't see it being on ITV itself - I guess the freeview digital channels ITV2 - 4 make it technically "free-to-air" now. So does this now mean they won't be live and free on google for UK users?

  • trapper_101 on March 4, 2010, 10:48 GMT

    This is great news - well done Mr. Modi!!!

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  • trapper_101 on March 4, 2010, 10:48 GMT

    This is great news - well done Mr. Modi!!!

  • pragmatist on March 4, 2010, 11:00 GMT

    This really is a surprise development, but a very positive one for cricket fans in the UK. I can't see it being on ITV itself - I guess the freeview digital channels ITV2 - 4 make it technically "free-to-air" now. So does this now mean they won't be live and free on google for UK users?

  • shafny on March 4, 2010, 11:04 GMT

    wow.... what a great news for cricket fans in uk. i was bit worried when they annonced that they going to broadcast in youtbe coz watching in pc is not like watching big screen tv. thanx to itv but please bring on good pandit dont even try to make the mistakes what setanta did.. as guest bringing theses compton and jujupieee cricketers they didnt do them self a favour. hope ITV will do the job.

  • on March 4, 2010, 11:22 GMT

    Very interesting development. It will be intriguing to see if any other major cricket can follow suit. It's a huge deal for the IPL to get that kind of exposure in the UK. Whether or not it captures the British imagination remains to be seen.

  • on March 4, 2010, 11:38 GMT

    IPL is making a very speedy progress worldwide!! NO surprises with success in India but worldwide was not going to be easy. like Dhoni for team India its Modi for IPL. Success guarunteed!!

  • on March 4, 2010, 11:40 GMT

    I am an England cricket fan! when IPL started I was a big fan of it too. My second team of choice is Pakistan, as u can guess its the country of my Forefathers. I thought pak cricketers brought great fun to IPL specially playin alongside their Indian colleagues. There are millions of people in the world like me; Ive lost most of my interest in IPL since the departure of Pak players....I know many many others in england that have the same feeling. I guess I'd switching to skysports or practising cricket on my wii when IPL's on ITV...I will only watch it when KP & Morgan r playin tho hehe!

  • CricketPissek on March 4, 2010, 11:49 GMT

    excellent news... been waiting for ages to catch some cricket @ home :) what about that youtube deal though? I thought google was going to broadcast it free on youtube except in the States? is that still on as well? spoilt for choice for cricket in the UK?! my my! how the tide has turned

  • shivshankarb on March 4, 2010, 11:50 GMT

    Thank you Mr. Modi, that's very nice of you!

  • TheSouthallBee on March 4, 2010, 12:11 GMT

    Well done ITV and Mr. Modi.

  • nashpoka on March 4, 2010, 12:17 GMT

    I think now Modi has made it tough for ECB to argue against broadcasting ashes on free channels in UK.