Sky acquires India v England cricket series following Channel 4 coverage

Next month’s three one-day international (ODI) matches and five Twenty20 (T20) matches between India and England will be broadcast by Sky Sports.

The announcement comes after international cricket returned to terrestrial television for the first time in 16 years, with Channel 4 providing coverage of the ongoing four-game test series between the national teams of the two countries.

Channel 4 acquired the coverage via an agreement with Star, the international rights holder of all Indian home matches until the conclusion of the 2022/23 season.

However, it has been reported by SportBusiness that neither Channel 4 nor Sky’s rival in the UK pay-TV market, BT Sport, were interested in Star’s £20 million asking price for the upcoming T20 and ODI fixtures.

As a result, Sky will regain the exclusive rights to the upcoming series of matches, starting with the first T20 game on 12 March and finishing on 28 March with the final ODI.

Bryan Henderson, Director of Cricket at Sky Sports, said: “We’re delighted to be broadcasting England’s white-ball tour of India and are especially looking forward to the five T20 internationals as we build up to the IPL and the ICC T20 World Cup later this year.”

In addition, the deal has also seen Sky gain the rights to broadcast further Indian home tours against South Africa and New Zealand in October and November of this year, followed by the West Indies in January 2022 and Sri Lanka in February 2022.

Following the upcoming series Sky will provide coverage of the 2021 Men’s T20 Cricket World Cup, which will also be hosted in India, taking place in October and November. 

The tournament was originally due to be held in Australia, but was postponed and relocated due to the COVID-19 pandemic.