ESPN Star Sports Bags Rights for Hockey India League
The first edition of the new league - approved by the International Hockey League - will launch next year.
NEW DELHI - ESPN Star Sports (ESS) has entered into a multi-year agreement for broadcast of the Hockey India League (HIL), due for launch in January 2013. ESS inked the agreement with Hockey India, the governing body for field hockey in the country, which gives the broadcaster rights to all international hockey test matches featuring the Indian team played in India. ESS will also have rights for global broadcast of at least five of these matches. Financial terms of the deal were not given.
The Hockey India League has been approved by the International Hockey Federation and will feature national and international players who will comprise at least six franchised hockey teams, with 33 matches to be played in each edition.
“Hockey India has a clear vision - we want to revive the glory days of hockey in India and drive popularity of the game across the country.
This partnership with ESS will play a key role in our overall plans," said Hockey India League secretary general and chairman Narinder Batra, adding, "The proposed league will be the biggest initiative that hockey has ever seen in India. We have been working out the details for months now and I am glad to announce that things are quickly falling into place. I am confident that our partners ESS will help us deliver a flawless world class product.”
“Hockey is close to our heart and we will drive all our efforts to make this league a success. We are also delighted to have all international hockey test matches under Hockey India to be played in India on our networks for a five-year period. I look forward to some memorable occasions and a new era for Indian hockey," said ESS MD Peter Hutton.
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