WICB EXTENDS AGREEMENT WITH ESPN

St John’s Antigua – The West Indies Cricket Board today announced an historic three year agreement withbroadcast partner ESPN.

Under the new deal, ESPN in the Caribbean and ESPN3.com in the US, will broadcast Caribbean T20 and other WICB regional tournaments live to audiences across the globe. Highlights packages of West Indies international home series will also air on ESPN in the Caribbean.

ESPN was host broadcaster for the inaugural Caribbean T20 in July 2010 and also will be host broadcaster for thesecond edition to be played from Monday, January 10 to Sunday, January 23 in Antigua and Barbados. Under thenew deal ESPN and ESPN3.com in the U.S. will broadcast the tournament in 2012 and 2013 as well.

“The WICB is pleased to be working with ESPN once more. We see this as a mutual investment in the sport, in our players and the people across the Caribbean. The new three-year deal will further help to showcase the players in the West Indies and give them unparalleled global exposure. It will also give viewers around the world the opportunity to get a taste and feel of the unique flavour, style and vibe of cricket in the Caribbean,” said Dr Ernest Hilaire, Chief Executive of the WICB.

“The WICB and ESPN have formed a very close relationship and we are both working well together as we seek to create a framework for cricket in the West Indies,” Hilaire continued.  “ESPN has demonstrated a passion for West Indies cricket and we are pleased to have them on board with us,” Dr Hilaire said.

“ESPN’s mission is to deliver the highest quality sports events to our viewers, and this agreement strengthens this commitment,” said Bernard Stewart, Vice President, ESPN Caribbean and Maritime Media.  “With the WICB matches, we will be providing West Indies cricket fans the opportunity to watch their local heroes on live television, as well as expand the appreciation of West Indies cricket by presenting these matches to our international viewership.”

Under the new agreement and in addition to the CT20, ESPN will broadcast other WICB regional cricket events, including the semi final and final of the WICB Regional 50 Over Tournament, to their global audiences in the Caribbean, the U.S., Australia and New Zealand, Africa and the Middle East.

In the Caribbean, fans will be able to view the matches live on ESPN Caribbean or ESPN2 Caribbean. And in the US, the tournament and other WICB regional cricket events will be carried exclusively on ESPN3.com, ESPN’s 24/7 signature broadband sports network.

Additionally ESPN will also air one-hour highlights programmes to their Caribbean audience of West Indies HomeSeries in 2011 – when West Indies host India and Pakistan; and 2012 – when West Indies host New Zealand and Australia.

About ESPN International:
ESPN International is a division of ESPN, Inc., which has grown to include ownership — in whole or in part — of 46 television networks outside of the United States, as well as a variety of additional businesses that allow ESPN to reach sports fans in over 200 countries and territories across all seven continents. ESPN International business entities include television, radio, print, internet, broadband, wireless, consumer products, and event management. The company and its holdings maintain offices or production facilities in key locations around the world including Bangalore, Beijing, Buenos Aires, Delhi, Dublin, Hong Kong, London, Mexico City, Miami, Montpellier, Mumbai, Paris, São Paulo, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Taiwan, and Toronto. Since 1983, ESPN (originally founded in Bristol, Connecticut, USA, in 1979) has been growing around the world, establishing itself as the leading global sports media brand. The company’s philosophy to global growth is to always serve sports fans and be locally relevant to them, with content and products that tap into their great passion and dedication.
About ESPN3.com:

ESPN3.com is ESPN's live sports broadband network, giving fans a 24/7 online destination that delivers thousands of live, global sports events annually. It is available at no additional cost to fans who receive their high-speed Internet connection or cable TV video subscription from an affiliated service provider, and is currently available in approximately 65 million homes.  It is available via dozens of affiliated service providers nationwide, including Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, Comcast, AT&T, Verizon, Cox, Charter, Windstream, RCN, Insight, Frontier, Cavalier, Mediacom, Conway, Grande Communications and many more. It is also available at no cost to approximately 21 million U.S. college students and U.S.-based military personnel via computers connected to on-campus educational networks and on-base military networks.