Sky Sports extended its broadcast partnership with the England & Wales Cricket Board until 2019 in January 2015, increasing its unrivalled commitment to English cricket for a further two years.
The agreement offers cricket fans unprecedented coverage of England home fixtures, county matches, women's and age grade cricket, and will take the existing partnership into its 14th year.
The deal also enables English cricket to continue its record levels of investment at all levels of the game, which have since 2006 helped to transform the sport on pitch and off, including England becoming the number one Test team in the world.
Sky Sports viewers can enjoy a further two years of BAFTA award-winning coverage offering:
Test Matches - all of England’s Test matches played at home, including series against Pakistan and India in 2018 and the Ashes in 2019
Internationals - all One-Day Internationals and T20 matches, including Australia in 2018 and Pakistan in 2019, as well as some women’s and England Lions matches
County matches – at least 60 days of domestic cricket each summer covering each of the major competitions and featuring every county
Barney Francis, Managing Director of Sky Sports, commented: “We're passionate about our commitment to the game, including the men and women’s England teams and the County set up, and we're delighted to extend our partnership with the ECB. Since 2006, our viewers have enjoyed the incredible successes of the England team, including three Ashes victories, winning the ICC World Twenty20 and becoming the number one Test team in the world. We look forward to continuing the partnership until at least 2019."
Brian Havill, the ECB Acting Chief Executive, said: “We are delighted that Sky have taken up their option to extend their broadcasting contract with the England and Wales Cricket Board to 2019 as it demonstrates their belief in the ECB as well as the international, women’s and county game. This decision continues Sky’s unwavering commitment to cricket in England and Wales at every level for a further two years.
“In the last decade their loyalty and quality as a broadcasting partner has been beyond question and has benefited the game in so many ways. In that period there has been an unprecedented level of investment in the county game, including facilities, the grassroots, particularly coaching, and of course the England men’s and women’s teams. Now in this, Sky’s 10th season as the exclusive live broadcaster, that determination to support the game shines through with the announcement that every ball of the England women’s Ashes series will be shown live.”
The extension announcement will allow the ECB to continue to deliver record investment across all levels of the recreational, first-class and international game. Since 2006, when Sky became the ECB’s principal live TV broadcast partner, over £150m has been invested to help strengthen the game, by improving international, First Class and local facilities, as well recruiting over 45,000 more grassroots coaches and over 2m state school children to take up the game.
During this time, the men and women’s England teams have enjoyed unrivalled success on the pitch, with the men becoming the number 1 Test side in the world, winning three out of the last four Ashes series, and the ICC World Twenty20, and last summer Sky Sports showed its 200th live England Test. The investment has allowed the England women’s team to be awarded professional contracts for the first time, as well as also reaching number 1 in the world and winning the World Cup.