Sky and BBC to show Netball World Cup; Vitality ups England commitment
By Jonathan Rest at Sportel Monaco
Sky, the pay-television broadcaster in the UK, has acquired the bulk of rights to the 2019 Netball World Cup, to be staged in Liverpool in England, Sportcal understands.
Sky, the dominant netball broadcaster in the country, is set to be the host broadcaster of the tournament at the city's Echo Arena on 12 to 21 July, and will show all the matches.
It is understood that the BBC, the UK's public-service broadcaster, will show one game per day between 4pm and 6pm UK time.
Two of England's pool stage matches are slated to be played within that timeslot, including the 13 July clash with Scotland, although there are no guarantees the BBC will show every game involving the host nation live.
Sky held exclusive UK rights to the 2015 Netball World Cup held in Sydney, Australia, and presently shows matches of the England Netball team and games from the country’s top-tier Superleague in a four-year deal that runs to 2020.
Last month, Sportcal revealed that the Lagardère Sports agency had won the contract to exclusively distribute global media rights to the next two editions of the Netball World Cup (the 2023 edition will be staged in either New Zealand or South Africa).
Lagardère is able to exploit the rights on a multi-platform basis outside of the host nation, which is responsible for selling the domestic rights and providing for and paying for the host broadcast operation.
It was one of 10 agencies and broadcasters to bid for the INF rights after the governing body launched an invitation to tender in January.
Meanwhile, Vitality, the UK-based life insurance company, has today extended its sponsorship of England Netball and the national team for a further three years.
Under the renewal, said to be "one of the largest deals in women's sport in the UK," England, the gold medallists at this year's Commonwealth Games, will compete as the Vitality Roses.
Vitality, which signed up as the principal sponsor of England Netball in July 2015, is reported to have more than doubled its investment in the partnership, ensuring that a full-time programme can continue beyond next year's World Cup.
Joanna Adams, the chief executive of England Netball, said today: "Vitality is a well-established and prominent brand and it is fantastic that they continue to recognise the positive impact of our sport. Vitality's continued investment is further testament to the phenomenal growth we've seen in the sport in the last 12 months. There is a lot of talk about women's sport but very few brands are actually providing that vital funding so we are incredibly proud that Vitality are continuing their support and investment."