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Nine wants early Cricket Australia rights deal

Australian commercial broadcaster Nine will push for an early renewal of rights to events operated by Cricket Australia “as soon as possible,” despite plans by the governing body to delay the sales process until next year.

Cricket Australia reportedly plans to postpone any rights auction until a dispute with the Australian Cricketers’ Association over a new pay deal is resolved.

“We’ve made no secret of the fact that we’re keen to acquire the rights to all forms of cricket, and we’d like to do that as soon as possible,” Nine’s head of sport, Tom Malone, told the Australian. “We have every confidence that Cricket Australia and the players will reach agreement soon, and we’re keen to progress our discussions around the next rights deal.”

The report added that Cricket Australia had been hoping for a total of Aus$900m (€601m/$688m) from its next five-year rights cycle, from 2018 to 2022, but a Aus$700m target might be more realistic considering the financial problems currently suffered by commercial broadcaster Ten, a rights partner.