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Ofcom approves deal for Eurosport to show Wimbledon coverage

UK media regulator Ofcom has approved a deal that will result in international sports broadcaster Eurosport becoming the first commercial entity to broadcast live coverage in the UK of the Wimbledon tennis tournament.

Earlier this month it emerged that Eurosport had secured the deal with the All England Lawn Tennis Club, which operates Wimbledon, to show the tournament over five years, from 2016 to 2020.

As part of the deal, Eurosport held talks with public-service broadcaster the BBC, currently the exclusive live domestic rights-holder, as well as Ofcom.

Confirmation of the approval from the regulator today (Thursday) means that Eurosport, which is owned by international media company Discovery Communications, will be able to show simulcast live coverage of finals weekend and show a daily highlights programme.

Ofcom said today: “We consulted in May 2016 on these requests and Ofcom received one response in support of the proposals. After considering the response and information supplied by the BBC and Discovery Networks in support of their applications, Ofcom has decided to grant consent to the proposals for coverage.”

The 2016 Wimbledon Championships will start on June 27.