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TV Rights Clips 2: Motorsport, baseball, cricket and new media

  • Motorsport: German pay-broad-caster Premiere acquired the exclusive live rights for motor racing’s Nascar and Indycar series for the 2006 season. Premiere will broadcast all 14 Indycar races and will pick up coverage of the Nascar series from the 6th round.
  • Motorsport: French pay-broadcaster Canal Plus acquired the live rights for the Le 24 Hours in a two-year deal for 2006 and 2007. It beat competition from the incumbent rights holders, public-service broad-caster France Télévisions and cable and satellite broadcaster Eurosport.
  • Baseball: Pan-European cable and satellite channel North American Sports Network, acquired the pan-European rights to Major League Baseball in a five-year deal from 2006 to 2010 worth between $18m (£10.3m/ n€14.8m) and $20m.  NASN has the rights to show more than 275 games per season in all formats, including over the Internet and in high-definition. NASN said that the deal would help it reach its planned target of seven to 10 million subscribers over the next year.  It presently is available to 1.6 million across Europe, including 200,000 in the UK.
  • Cricket: African pay-broadcaster Supersport acquired the South African rights to all international cricket in India for the next four years, from 2006 until March 2010, in a deal with the Nimbus Communications agency.
  • Cricket: Sri Lankan broadcaster Derana acquired the terrestrial rights to the ongoing India v England series in a deal with Nimbus Communications.  Nimbus also signed deals for the series with Ten Sports for the non-exclusive pay-television rights in Hong Kong and Sri Lanka.
  • New media: South African mobile telephone operator MTN acquired the mobile rights for the 2006 World Cup in a deal with the Infront agency. The deal allows MTN to offer near-live clips of action from all 64 matches.
  • New media: Mobile operator Vodafone Ireland acquired near-live rights for horse racing’s Gold Cup meeting at Cheltenham in a deal with Racing UK and betting company Betting Site.  Under the deal Vodafone will also offer customers coverage of other meetings covered by Racing UK.
  • New media: Broadband digital broadcaster Premium TV acquired the worldwide internet rights for tennis’s ATP Masters Series and season-ending Tennis Masters Cup in a three-year deal with Tennis Properties, the series’ commercial arm and host broadcaster.  Premium TV will provide a subscription service which will allow viewers to watch highlights of matches.
  • New media: Mobile operator Digicel acquired the rights for the Haiti Football Federation in a deal worth $1m (£570,000/€822,000).
  • Cycling: Pan-European cable and satellite broadcaster Eurosport acquired the rights for the Dauphiné Libéré.  It will broadcast live coverage on its Eurosport 2 channel.