HomeBroadcastBBL Boss Calls Tournament “Best In A Long, Long Time” Despite 10% FTA Viewership Drop

BBL Boss Calls Tournament “Best In A Long, Long Time” Despite 10% FTA Viewership Drop

BBL Boss Calls Tournament “Best In A Long, Long Time” Despite 10% FTA Viewership Drop

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ricket Australia head of Big Bash Leagues (BBL), Alistair Dobson, has called the ongoing 2020/21 BBL competition the “best in a long, long time”, despite recording a 10% drop in national free-to-air (FTA) broadcast figures.

As the tournament’s regular season draws to a close, Seven West Media has reported a decline in viewership figures for the second consecutive year.

Alongside Foxtel, the broadcaster acquired the television rights to the competition from Channel 10 in 2018, signing a six-year deal worth $1.2 billion in total.

The decline in viewership figures will continue to strain the already precarious relationship between Cricket Australia and Seven West Media.

The broadcaster lodged an affidavit with the Federal Court in November, seeking access to email correspondence between Foxtel, the Board of Control for Cricket in India and state governments.

Foxtel, on the other hand, has announced a surge in BBL viewership figures this summer.

The pay broadcaster’s audience numbers are up 28%, with the number of Kayo subscribers choosing to watch the BBL doubling as compared to BBL9.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Seven believes Foxtel has poached a portion of its viewers and will now hope for a discount on its annual TV rights fee — which currently totals more than $80 million a season.

Despite Seven’s viewership numbers, Dobson is satisfied that BBL10’s regular season was one to remember.

He remains confident the home-and-away season will proceed as normal next time around, amid calls that reducing the number of games could increase each individual fixture’s viewership figures.

“Certainly we’re committed to playing a full 56-game season for the foreseeable future,” Dobson said.

“All the feedback we’ve had is it’s one of the best seasons in a long, long time.”

Dobson lauded the rules changes trialled during BBL10, including the Bash Boost, the Power Surge and X-Factor Players.

“They all played a really important role in creating such an amazing season that came down to the very last game,” Dobson said.

“Overall, we’re really excited about the number of people tuning in and playing games in front of crowds.

“It talks to the strength of the competition.

“I think it’s still one of the best sports leagues going around.

“In terms of the way the game continues to evolve and the entertainment that it provides every night, I still think it’s hard to beat.

“I think fans are still tuning in wherever they can and are able to watch the Big Bash every night,” he said.

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