Major growth of TV coverage as Tennis Channel adds squash listings for major events
By Squash Mad Business Reporter
The Professional Squash Association (PSA) have today (February 26, 2014) announced a ground-breaking, long-term partnership with US Broadcaster Tennis Channel that will vastly expand squash’s presence and visibility in the United States.
Under the multi-year agreement, Tennis Channel will become the exclusive North American broadcast partner of the PSA, and show close to 170 hours of top-tier squash competition on the network and its digital subscription service, Tennis Channel Plus, in the upcoming year.
Beginning in March, 10 PSA tournaments will appear on Tennis Channel and Tennis Channel Plus throughout the year, among them prestigious events like the British Open, US Open, PSA World Series Finals and PSA World Championship.
Tennis Channel Plus will carry all matches live and on-demand, with delayed telecasts of select events to follow on the linear channel, including a weekly “Squash Sunday” programming block.
At a time when squash is enjoying a period of unprecedented growth across the United States – epitomized by success stories like American Amanda Sobhy’s advance to the upper echelons of the worldwide professional rankings – Tennis Channel and Tennis Channel Plus will provide new avenues for the sport into millions of previously unreached American homes.
“We are delighted to have reached an agreement with Tennis Channel and feel certain that this is the beginning of a partnership that will be of huge benefit to squash not just in America, but all around the world,” said PSA CEO Alex Gough.
“Tennis Channel will take live squash into the homes of millions of American citizens and to an audience who have never before engaged with the sport, and we look forward to working closely with the team to ensure squash becomes a valuable part of their portfolio throughout the coming years.”
Tennis Channel’s initial PSA telecast will take place Sunday, March 1, at 4 p.m. ET, with the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions. In January Tennis Channel Plus provided live coverage of the event, held in Manhattan’s Grand Central Terminal, and continues to offer on-demand replays.
“We’re excited to work with the Professional Squash Association to elevate the sport’s profile in the United States while expanding Tennis Channel’s portfolio at the same time,” said Jeremy Langer, vice president, programming, Tennis Channel.
“Our Tennis Channel Plus subscription service gives squash players everywhere the chance to access their sport live or on-demand in a way that wasn’t possible before. We also expect the PSA’s investment in broadcast-production quality, along with squash’s fast pace and athleticism, to generate a number of fans as newcomers to our sport sample our digital and televised coverage.”
In addition to the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions, Tennis Channel and Tennis Channel Plus will show this year’s Metrosquash Windy City Open, Canary Wharf Classic, El Gouna International, British Open, PSA World Series Finals, US Open, Qatar Classic, PSA World Championship and Sun Hung Kai Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Open.
Tennis Channel also will work closely with US Squash, the administrative body responsible for the development of squash across America, to offer unique advertising opportunities to existing partners and help connect major brands with the rapidly growing squash community.
Tennis Channel Plus is available to all U.S.-based subscribers, regardless of whether or not they currently subscribe to Tennis Channel or a pay-TV provider. An annual subscription costs $69.99, with monthly and daily rates also available. More information can be found at www.tennischanneleverywhere.com.
Tennis Channel (www.tennischannel.com) is the only 24-hour, television-based multimedia destination dedicated to both the professional sport and tennis lifestyle. A hybrid of comprehensive sports, health, fitness, pop culture, entertainment, lifestyle and travel programming, the network is home to every aspect of the wide-ranging, worldwide tennis community.
It also has the most concentrated single-sport coverage in television, with telecast rights to the US Open, Wimbledon, Roland Garros (French Open), Australian Open, Emirates Airline US Open Series, ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events, top-tier WTA competitions, Davis Cup and Fed Cup by BNP Paribas, and Hopman Cup. Tennis Channel is carried by nine of the top 10 video providers.