Murdoch, Seven Grab Cricket From Nine in A$1.18 Billion Deal

James Sutherland lauds Cricket Australia's new broadcast deal with Seven and Foxtel

James Sutherland lauds Cricket Australia's new broadcast deal with Seven and Foxtel

The five-year deal from 2020 to 2024 covers television, streaming, mobile and digital rights and is estimated to be about $100 million more than Seven paid for its current five-year deal.

Channel Nine's relationship with cricket has been tested in recent years, after revelations surfaced it was losing more than $30 million a year covering the sport.

The deal, which includes broadcast rights for worldwide cricket matches, one day tests and the Big Bash League, comes after weeks of negotiations between Cricket Australia and broadcasters.

Mediaweek will have more detail about the new rights deal shortly.

It also represents a good deal for Cricket Australia, with an annual value of around $170 million, which is well above the $120 million per annum the sports body now receives.

"In response to media speculation concerning cricket rights, Seven West Media Limited advises that it has been informed by Cricket Australia that it is the successful bidder with Foxtel", a statement posted to the ASX said.

"Cricket will continue to be a part of Nine's schedule into the future with current deals in place covering the next ashes series from England in 2019, the ODI World Cup in the United Kingdom in the same year and in 2020 the T20 World Cups to be held in Australia".

"I would like to pay tribute to Patrick Delany and Fox Sports, along with Tim Worner and Seven West Media for their belief in cricket".

Conceding defeat, Nine said it is "immensely proud" of its long association with the sport and wished Cricket Australia (CA) and its new broadcast partners well, while CBS-owned Ten said it is disappointed that its bid had been rejected. A partnership that enables us to further evolve our business model into a new future.

The move makes a subscription-based pay-television operator, Foxtel, the home of Australian cricket for the first time.

"We've got some rebuilding to do", Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland said at the press conference.

Cricket Australia will continue to deliver broadcast-quality streaming of matches not broadcast by the two networks including worldwide tour matches, non-broadcast JLT One-Day Cup and JLT Sheffield Shield matches, all available through cricket.com.au and the CA Live Pass. Fans will also still be able to access all the highlights they have come to enjoy through cricket.com.au and Cricket Australia Live.

"Network Ten and our BBL team led by David Barham revolutionised the way cricket is broadcast in Australia and attracted new, younger viewers to the game".

Seven will broadcast 43 KFC Big Bash League matches, in what will turn the league into a full Home and Away season, while FOX SPORTS will broadcast 16 matches exclusively, and simulcast the remainder.

The FTA network has therefore achieved its twin aims of acquiring a replacement sport for its summer broadcast schedule and not over-spending, while Foxtel has made a major investment in content to complement its winter offerings of NRL and AFL.

"We know Australians love and respect cricket and so do we. A partnership built on common values and vision to mutually build the game and Nine's business as we connect with more audiences the way they choose".

AdNews will keep track of cricket rights develops as they unfold today.

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