The British subscription sports broadcaster, Sky Sports renewed its exclusive broadcasting rights to the International Cricket Council (ICC) in the UK and Ireland till 2031.
The UK media giant struck a new eight-year renewal with the world’s cricket governing body. For the first time, this will be a direct contractual relationship between the two.
The partnership will see the Sky and its streaming platform NOW holding the ICC Broadcast and digital rights for all the men’s and women’s pinnacle cricketing events such as the ICC Cricket World Cups and ICC T20 World Cups till the end of 2031.
Within this eight-year period, the channel will be broadcasting all 28 international events across men’s, women’s, and u19 cricket. It will also include the three tournaments to be played on UK soil, the ICC World Test Championship Final 2025, the ICC Women’s World T20 2026, and the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2030.
Geoff Allardice, ICC Chief Executive, in an official statement said, “We are delighted to partner with Sky Sports until 2031 as the home of ICC cricket in the UK and Ireland. For the first time the partnership will be a direct relationship with Sky Sports which gives us some exciting opportunities for innovative collaborations. I am confident this partnership can support our long-term ambition to attract more players and more fans to the game”.
Jonathan Licht, Sky Sports MD said, “With more people watching cricket at the highest-level after England men’s and women’s successes in 2017, 2019 and 2022, our award-winning coverage strives to give cricket fans the complete experience, with all the action both on and off the pitch”.
He further added, “This new direct partnership with the ICC means that Sky Sports viewers in the UK & Ireland will continue to enjoy every ball, run, wicket and catch from every international tournament for many years to come, and we’re all hugely excited to see what’s in store”.
ICC events had registered a huge rise in viewership in the UK over the past few years. The ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019 recorded the highest average audience for a cricket tournament in the UK to date with 8.8 million viewers. England’s win over Pakistan in the final of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 was the highest-viewed T20 match in the UK ever having a similar partnership with the terrestrial broadcaster.