T20 red ball
CARIBBEAN T20 might be cricket, lovely cricket, but regional administrators do not expect to see any profits just yet – even with Entertainment & Sports Programming Network (ESPN) on board.
A senior West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) official yesterday told the DAILY NATION that though the relationship with the major North American sports cable network would defer a substantial amount of the cost for the tournament, the partnership would not cover the entire cost of the television production.
Though declining to give a monetary figure on the deal between the WICB and ESPN, the long-standing official said the WICB was staging the tournament, which ended at Kensington Oval last night, at a loss. But he was quick to add that the WICB saw the tournament more as an investment at this initial stage than a money-making exercise.
Under the three-year deal, announced just over two weeks ago, ESPN in the Caribbean and ESPN3.com in the United States, not only broadcast the Caribbean T20, but is set to show other WICB regional tournaments live to audiences across the globe. Highlight packages of West Indies international home series will also air on ESPN in the Caribbean.
“The new three-year deal will further help to showcase the players in the West Indies and give them unparalleled global exposure. It will also give viewers around the world the opportunity to get a taste and feel of the unique flavour, style and vibe of cricket in the Caribbean,” chief executive of the WICB, Dr Ernest Hilaire, said then.