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BBC deal keeps Wimbledon on free-to-air television

UK public-service broadcaster the BBC has renewed a rights deal for the Wimbledon Championships to keep the tennis grand slam tournament on free-to-air television.

The renewal with the All England Club, which operates the event, will run for three years, from 2018 to 2020.

Wimbledon will continue to serve as the host broadcaster of the event and will show live coverage and highlights of the tournament on the BBC One and BBC Two channels as well as the digital BBC Red Button service and the BBC Sport website. The deal also includes live rights on the BBC’s Radio 5 Live service.

BBC director general Tony Hall said: “In what are difficult financial times, the deal represents the BBC's commitment to sport in what is an incredibly competitive market.”

The deal extends the longest partnership in sports broadcasting history, with the BBC having first broadcast from Wimbledon in 1937.

“The BBC consistently delivers large national audiences for Wimbledon and they deliver those audiences with high-quality production values, live across multiple platforms and always with a strong narrative,” All England Club chief executive Richard Lewis said.

“Importantly, as host broadcaster for the championships, the BBC also ensures that we can provide a comprehensive and premium service to our global media partners.”