Cricket Australia (CA) has made a big change in the format of the Big Bash League. CA has cut down the domestic T20 League to 43 games, 18 less than the current length, for the 2024-25 season. The decision was taken as a part of a new seven-year broadcast deal signed by CA with Foxtel Group and Seven West Media.
Seven and Foxtel previously signed a $ 1.18B six-year deal in 2018 and took over the rights from Nine Network, which held them for 40 years.
CA said that the reduction of BBL games in the new deal was made to increase players’ availability. After the 2017-18 edition, BBL till now used to be 61 matches long, including the knockout games. But many premiere Australian players couldn’t take part in the tournament due to its clash with the national team fixtures.
The ongoing season of the league will also see the participation of David Warner (Sydney Thunder) and Steve Smith (Sydney Sixers) once the New Year Test against South Africa concludes. But due to SA20 and ILT20 leagues lined up, BBL might see lesser participation from the overseas stars. Hence to avoid such situations, CA decided to shorten the length of the tournament.
Speaking on the new broadcast deal, CA Chief Nick Hockley on Tuesday said, “The quality and reach of the Foxtel Group and Seven’s cricket production is first class and the outstanding service they provide cricket fans was a strong consideration in our decision to continue with this successful partnership.”
“We are delighted to be continuing our broadcast partnership with the Foxtel Group and Seven under an improved deal.” he added in his official statement.
The new broadcast deal of the CA will begin in mid-2024 and will continue till the 2030-31 season of the T20 tournament.
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