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michael knight
12 Nov 09 10:31
Date Joined: 08 Nov 05
| Topic/replies: 2,918 | Blogger: michael knight's blog
England's home Ashes Tests are set to return to terrestrial television following recommendations for revised "listed events" to appear free-to-air.

Sky will be seething and rightly so. Why should they spend millions covering the less attractive England games (and county cricket) when they are denied this major event once every 4 years. Would like to see the Gov't compensate the ECB if sky pull out completely.
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Report Deadly Earnest November 12, 2009 9:35 AM GMT
Could mean more business for Sky in the long term if they take a balanced view of things.
Report positively4thsteet November 12, 2009 10:00 AM GMT
they shouldn't have taken the out of brown
Report I win every time! November 12, 2009 10:11 AM GMT
don't get too excited - next screening will be 2017 lol
Report Innocent Bystander November 12, 2009 10:18 AM GMT
by then the whole country will be digital so Sky will probably stick it on Sky Sports news or something like that. Dont know why the BBC are getting a hard on, they almost certainly wont bid on it (they have said so)
Report Reagan November 12, 2009 4:11 PM GMT
agree Positively4th.

purely due to Brown feeling offended by the Murdoch.
Report dougydougy. November 12, 2009 5:08 PM GMT
good thing imo
Report dougydougy. November 12, 2009 5:08 PM GMT
if it goes back ti ch4 that is
Report Innocent Bystander November 12, 2009 5:17 PM GMT
C4 and BBC dont want it

Five unlikely

Unless its dirt cheap
Report Pitch Doctor November 12, 2009 5:22 PM GMT
If they the BBC cut out some of the 100 managers on over 100k they might be able to afford it. It's funny how they get stuck into the parasite MP's and their expenses and then their gaffers are fleecing the life out of everything. If you are on 800k a year you'd think you could afford a car, and not need to spend 2K a month on taxi's.
Report DStyle November 12, 2009 5:28 PM GMT
sky should be forced make their sports content available for anyone who can pay for it without the need to tie themselves into a 12 month contract and take all the other ** that comes with it. e.g. you could pay £50 (or 500 euros in 2017) to get the whole ashes series.

naturally they'll resist for as long they can, but it's where i suspect things will gradually move to, as the technology to receive any content no longer becomes a barrier.

unless murdoch takes over the world first of course.
Report mafeking November 12, 2009 5:34 PM GMT
looking forward to going to the 4.15 at ascot just as KP completes his triple hundred :p
Report Mushtaq November 13, 2009 6:10 AM GMT
"Supportive" Telegraph editorial sums up simply how the idea is based on ideals rather than sense.

"As believers in the free market, we would not normally favour a measure to restrict it. However, for many years there has been a statutory requirement to show on terrestrial, free-to-air TV certain sporting events the so-called Crown Jewels that have a "national resonance..... A review due to report today is expected to propose that they should once again (from 2016) include home Ashes series, which have recently been the exclusive preserve of Sky. As a result, millions of cricket lovers missed the last domestic victory by England. If there is to be a list of protected sports, then the Ashes should be on it. Should the Aussies start winning again, it can always be reviewed."

Sky have supported all levels of English cricket away and (when allowed) at home when it was at its lowest ebb. We might not be so lucky in the future.
Report BigMig November 13, 2009 7:43 AM GMT
Could work out well for Sky. They stick it on a free channel and announce: "Look how well we cover cricket - why not sign up and watch every summer and winter?"
Report Deadly Earnest November 13, 2009 8:05 AM GMT
My thoughts exactly BM.

Surely for a hugely significant event like this capable of converting a lot of people into cricket fans, the long term benefit to Sky from extra interest in the sport would outweigh the short term loss of the amount of people who would have taken up a 12 month contract just to watch the event.

It is vey much a 2 edged sword this exclusivity Sky has. As matters stand, year by year the interest in cricket will dwindle as coverage can only be accessed by forking out £20-50 per month or so. This is not good for cricket and in turn, not good for Sky. Giving new people a free taste every now and then would potentially do wonders for both parties. If the free cricket is interesting that is...
Report sageform November 13, 2009 8:14 AM GMT
But are people going to watch cricket every 4 years if they don't watch it the rest of the time?
Report Deadly Earnest November 13, 2009 8:30 AM GMT
I can refer back to my own childhood here. Nobody introduced me to cricket on TV if my memory is correct, I just found it live on ABC TV in Australia and was instantly captivated. I was probably 8-10 years of age. Had there been such a thing as pay TV then and all the cricket was broadcast there exclusively, I doubt I would have ever developed a strong interest in watching the sport. There would have been virtually no chance my family would have subscribed to pay TV when I was young. I may have been encouraged somewhat by the fact cricket was the main summer team sport in Australia at that time and was therefore splashed all over the back of the daily newspapers that I read.

Put it on free and if it is of any interest, people will watch it, that is for certain. There will be people young and old out there who read about cricket, see it in the news, maybe even listen on the radio, who have a certain level of interest in thegame, that would be taken to another level if they got to see some exciting and interesting live televised cricket. Are there enough of them is the question, but my guess would be yes.
Report Lady Margaret November 13, 2009 10:42 AM GMT
added my thoughts at the bottom here
Report dougydougy. November 13, 2009 12:10 PM GMT
Totally agree DE, My interest stems from exactly the same scenario, waking up in the summer holidays, mooching around the house while every couple of weeks this weird game played out for 5 days in the background. I believe it becomes part of your make up as an englishman and all the cricket fans I know were attracted in exactly the same manner. If the ECB are worried about the financial implicartions it will have it may (and when i say may i mean there's no chance in hell) but may actually lead them to review the ridiculous inefficient county system.

People who argue sky saves sport are the same people who have sky, they are in the minority, an elitist fan group and they will end up destroying the thing that made them fans in the first place, it makes no sense.
Report Mushtaq November 14, 2009 6:28 AM GMT
How is any terrestrial station going to provide decent coverage when only showing it one summer in every four?

And also in a sub-note to the report - recommendation to abolish the "B-List" of terrestrial highlights.

Which means no cricket on Terrestrial TV for 3 summers in every 4, because i can hardly see Sky saying "after you" to Channel 5 in future.
Report Conkers November 14, 2009 8:13 AM GMT
Isn't the blindingly obvious solution for Sky to provide a free rerun on the bbc red button, delayed by, for the sake of argument, one hour....

Almost all people for whom cricket is a big factor in deciding to subscribe for SS are going to be interested in all the other cricket Sky show...

And showing it free but delayed may well hook some newbies...

Plus of course ECBs £120m figure just emphasizes what a shabbby bunch of liars they are.
Report Mr. Memory November 14, 2009 8:39 AM GMT
Having made an ill thought out political decision, are the Government going to replace the cash that SKY generates for childrens & youth cricket at Club level ?
Having sold off school playing fields, the whole emphasis for youngsters cricket falls on the Clubs, who are currently financed to provide good coaching facilities.
The BBC will not replace this money as they are more interested in providing gallons of pig swill for their management.

If anyone is interested, I do not watch SKY television.
Report JimmyK November 14, 2009 9:13 AM GMT
This is a poor decision by the powers that be.

Interestingly, it was one of the few marquee events on that list that the whole country is unified in their wish for a winner.

FA Cup Final, two English teams
Wimbledon, unlikely we have a winner
Challenge Cup Final, two English teams
GRand National, horses

The Ashes, along with the Olympics (not profitable for any pay to view station to cover), is the only event arguably where we care who wins.

The money lost would decimate coaching at the lower end. This would be the ECB's decision though as they would continue to siphon too much to the bloated and poor quality Championship system. Be interesting to see if the government try and step in and take some of the subsidies away from county cricket to ensure grass roots and schools coaching is not affected.
Report Mushtaq November 14, 2009 10:44 AM GMT
Reading some more, apparently this whole report EXPLICITLY did NOT consider the financial impact on the game, the fundamental reason for opposition.

What on earth is the value of a report which says that:

"Ignoring Financial issues, (and, incidentally, also presumably ignoring quality of coverage) we think these events should be reserved terrestrial TV"?

Who could disagree with such a meaningless conclusion?

(It's also somewhat confusing as to why they've put Home and away football involving the Home Nations on the list. How are they intending to force foreign countries to restrict coverage to terrestrial broadcasters, and if this principle is accepted why are Ashes matches in Australia not on the list? It's not as if the BBC is short of airtime between 11pm and 7am!)
Report mittheimp November 15, 2009 10:56 AM GMT
Why does it have to be the ashes? ashes ashes ashes.. this is the big problem with our approach to cricket - the ashes matters and everything else is a warm up for the ashes. This is just bull sh1t!

Why not have evey Lords test match from the summers major series on free to air? Its always sold out, would create interest for the other games in the series - so good for sky, keeps the game annually in the public eye and doesnt disrespect the other non-ashes teams!

I also dont see why ch4 or ch5 are not bidding for 2020 world cups - this if promoted properly could crate a lot of interest and high viewing figures and is an ideal foramt for advertising.
Report mafeking November 15, 2009 11:02 AM GMT
doesn't really do us any favours that the away ashes series follows 15 months at the most after a home series. very hard to focus on anything else especially if you're defending the urn. australia get a full 2 and a half years before they have to go away.
Report Mushtaq November 15, 2009 12:31 PM GMT
Isn't it back-to-back next time?
Report superam November 15, 2009 12:32 PM GMT
Well i'm over there for this 1 so it dont matter to me :)
Report mafeking November 15, 2009 12:35 PM GMT
pretty sure i heard somewhere it moving to a 3 year gap sometime soon. not sure why.
Report Mushtaq November 15, 2009 12:36 PM GMT
Lol - the new Shane Warne!

Not a bad ball actually ;)
Report dougydougy. November 18, 2009 7:29 AM GMT

That's where your money goes, not to bloody grass roots cricket, sort this lot out and you might have a game that is available to be veiwed by all that can support itself.
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