Sky Loses 2017 Ashes Cricket Coverage to BT Sport

By Gerald Lynch on at

BT's push into Sky's sporting coverage turf continues apace, with the telecoms giant pulling off quite the coup by bagging Ashes cricket coverage for the 2017 - 2018 tournament.

BT is thought to be paying around £16 million a year for the privilege, with rights holder Cricket Australia giving BT Sport its first major cricket tournament, breaking Sky's broadcast dominance over the sport in the UK. Once the tour kicks off, it'll be the first overseas cricket tournament to feature the English team broadcast by anyone other than Sky in 27 years.

BT Sport will show all Australian Test Matches, One Day Internationals and T20 Internationals played in Australia, which includes the five-match Ashes Test Series in 2017/18.

“BT Sport is delighted to be adding international cricket to its line-up, and to be the new home of the next Ashes tour in Australia," said Delia Bushell, Managing Director of BT TV and BT Sport.

"We will show live domestic games featuring the best players in the world during the Big Bash League and all Australian home matches for the next five years.”

The Ashes announcement is just the latest in a string of big wins for BT Sport, which recently also bagged Champion League and FA Cup coverage from Sky and ITV. It's also become the first broadcaster to show 4K sporting streams in the UK, with impressive results to boot. BT will now likely set its sights on the rights to coverage of domestic matches from the England & Wales Cricket Board – Sky currently holds the rights there, but they too go up for auction again in 2019. [BT]