New Delhi, June 4 (IANS) The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) Monday signed a seven-year contract with ESPN Star Sports for multi-platform rights to broadcast its domestic and home international matches.
The deal, which runs from 2013 to 2019, incorporates exclusive rights for television, online, mobile and radio, covering major cricket markets of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh among others across Asia. The broadcast arrangement also includes territories in North Africa.
ESPN STAR Sports will broadcast more than 300 days of live international cricket action, including 47 Test Matches, 63 One-day Internationals and 15 Twenty20 games.
Major Test playing nations will be competing in England, including New Zealand, Australia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, West Indies and South Africa. India's next two tours to England in 2014 and 2018 as well as three iconic Ashes series in 2013, 2015 and 2019.
In addition, ESS will broadcast 60 days of ECB's top class domestic cricket every year, including the popular Friends Life t20 competition, the CB40 tournament, the LV County Championship, as well as England Lions, England Under 19s and England Women's cricket.
"We are delighted to further extend our partnership with ECB with whom we have shared a very strong relationship over the past 2 decades. Over the years, we have continued to showcase the best cricket action from around the world to fans from the India sub-continent, and this acquisition further reaffirms our position as the leader in Cricket broadcasting," said Manu Sawhney, managing director, ESPN STAR Sports.
ECB chief executive David Collier said: " In a challenging economic climate with all sports facing tough competition for funding streams, it will also provide an important source of additional revenue for funding the development of our game at all levels.
"TV audiences for cricket are expanding rapidly in Asia and the Middle-East and we look forward to working closely with ESS to give both our international and county teams the widest possible TV exposure over the next seven years."