ZEE-ESPN’s cricket rights loss is Sony’s gain

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While the court case between ZEE Network, ESPN Sports and the India cricket board continues to take twists and turns over who’s going to telecast the forthcoming India cricket matches, another broadcaster namely Sony Entertainment Television Asia has been awarded this year’s telecast rights for all upcoming India cricket matches.

The new President of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Ranbir Singh Mahendra said that Ten Sports will produce the live feed for the Cricket Board, but he refused to comment on television rights since the matter is in court.

“The board has decided to produce the live telecast of the series itself and distribution will be done by Sony TV,” Mahendra told reporters. He also said live feeds would be produced by Ten Sports network for BCCI, while “telecast, distribution and marketing” would be done by Sony Entertainment Network on a “revenue sharing basis”.

The telecast of India-Pakistan Platinum Jubilee match on November 13 and two-Test series between India and South Africa in November-December would be done under the same arrangement, Mahendra said. An interesting point to note is that Sony Entertainment Television came out last when the cricket rights bid closed last month. The spat between ZEE and ESPN continues in India’s Supreme Court, with a decision hopefully to be announced in the next few days.

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