Indian Premier League 2010 March 4, 2010

ITV bags IPL rights in UK

Cricinfo staff

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

  • arun 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.

  • Dummy4 on March 6, 2010, 21:09 GMT

    Cricket on the telly. happy days

  • PAUL STEPHEN on March 6, 2010, 13:18 GMT

    hmm i agree wit you all...

  • Paul 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.

  • Eddy 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

  • Chandra 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.

  • Dummy4 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.

  • Eddy 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.

  • Sanjay 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.

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