BBC, ECB announce new county cricket partnership

The BBC and the ECB have released details of a new broadcast partnership for county cricket, with live ball-by-ball commentary of every County Championship match available throughout the season, plus all one-day and T20 matches.

Starting with the opening of the County Championship (10 April 2013), the commentaries will broadcast via BBC online streams, which will be hosted on the BBC Sport website and promoted on BBC Local Radio websites, the ECB website and county cricket websites.

To support the new streams, the BBC Sport website has updated the design of all of its county cricket pages, which will provide easy access to the live commentaries as they happen. The county cricket page will link to the scorecards for each game and feature the best interviews and audio highlights gathered from the network of BBC commentators and correspondents around the country. The page will also link to external county cricket sites.

BBC Local Radio has supported county cricket for over a decade, and this new agreement extends that commitment to now include all 18 counties. There will also be increased coverage on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, including commentary of a County Championship match every week. Commentary will come from current BBC Local Radio teams, Radio 5 live sports extra regulars and new talent.

David Collier, chief executive of ECB, comments: “Today’s announcement is a fantastic boost for county cricket ahead of the new domestic season next month and represents an important part of ECB’s wider transformation plan for the county game, which was announced last year following publication of the ‘Morgan Review.’

“With a new domestic playing schedule due to start in 2014, we are keen to promote the county game to the widest possible audience and delighted that the BBC will be providing such comprehensive coverage of all our county competitions, and seeking to recruit a new generation of broadcasting talent. This is great news for all followers of county cricket nationwide, and for the 18 First Class Counties who will undoubtedly benefit from wider levels of media exposure.”

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