Tuesday, June 9, 2009

End of Aussie Rules in UK / Ireland / America?

Nice, tough and grinding win for Geelong over West Coast on Sunday. Didn't get to watch it live as I down in London for the (ill-fated) Twenty20 of the Aussie and Scottish sides, but recorded it, and watched last night from the comfort of home. Is this the last time this will happen?

Today's news is that Irish pay TV company Setanta are pretty much knackered and may shut down altogether this week as they head first into administration and then inevitably receivership once the creditors call it in. While rights such as English Premier League, FA Cup and England games will be snapped up pretty quick, there's little chance of anyone wanting AFL or NRL rights. And the poor old SPL may end up with nada, and the various GAA sports too.

As well as their Sports 1, 2 and Golf channels, Setanta also package up the various club football channels such as Rangers TV, Arsenal TV, Liverpool TV, Chelsea TV. And, interestingly, ESPN, the Mickey Mouse (Disney) owned global sports media giant's European channel. ESPN, fresh from ruining Cricinfo's simple website layout, are keen to get into the UK market and bid for the EPL rights last time round but lost out to Setanta and Sky, and are believed to be keen to pick over and carcuses left from Setanta.

While I hope it doesn't eventuate, looks like it'll be a reality soon enough. If ESPN takes over in an orderly fashion perhaps the coverage won't be interupted, but we'll see.

Sports covered by Setanta (other than football):

Indian Premier League Cricket
Rugby (various UK / Irish professional comps)
GAA (Hurling; football)
F1 Grand Prix Racing (in Ireland)
'UFC' (boxing / other fighting)
Major League Baseball
PGA Tour Golf


GEELONG 5.1 7.5 12.7 15.9 (99) DEFEATED
WEST COAST 1.3 5.6 8.9 11.11 (77)

GEELONG: Chapman 3, Hawkins 3, Ablett 2, Byrnes 2, Mooney, Stokes, Gamble, S Johnson, T Varcoe
WEST COAST: McKinley 2, Brown 2, Lynch 2, Cox, Kennedy, LeCras, Rosa, S Selwood

GEELONG: Ablett, Chapman, Ling, Scarlett, J Selwood
WEST COAST: Cox, Stenglein, Hunter, A Selwood, Hurn, Glass

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