The television rights deal for the Rugby Six Nations is expected to be announced on Thursday afternoon with the BBC having joined up with ITV in a bid to keep the tournament on free-to-air TV.
The RBS 6 Nations is on the BBC until 2017 but cuts to the broadcaster’s budget had led to speculation it would be outbid by Sky.
Some sources with knowledge of the negotiations have confirmed the BBC and ITV have been working on a combined bid for the 15 games a year for a fee of around £50million. The broadcasters would share the live matches and highlights equally.
Sky had been regarded as a favorite for TV rights, after a Rugby Six Nations Commmitte decided that, for the first time in history, bidding would be opened for Pay-TV companies.
The final round of biddin finished last week, and Sky’s offer was higher than BBC’s. BBC opened talks with ITV, which is a Rugby World Cup 2015 official and host broadcaster.
ITV had no intent in bidding for the wkole tournament, but has joined TV battle to keep rugby’s oldest international competition on free-to-air television. Keeping this tournament on terrestrial TV will definitely please rugby fans, and put some pressure on politicans to put Rugby Six Nations on the A-listing of sport events.
SportEventz will provide Rugby Six Nations live on satellite and TV schedule..