Those hyperventilating about the R&A’s deal with Sky over live television rights to the Open ignore the two-hour, prime-time round-up that will be shown each day on BBC.
The fact is the Open has dropped to the B-list of sporting events as regards broadcast rights and fails to make the top 30 ratings on the BBC with a peak of only 1 million last year.
As a public service broadcaster the BBC could not responsibly continue to air a daily dose of 12 hours to a relatively small audience and the move to Sky had been inevitable.
Far from being “driven by money” the R&A showed great loyalty to the BBC and for 20 years accepted far below market value for this prized asset which funds all other projects.
One is sympathetic to veteran broadcasters whose day is probably over and resigned to comments from the usual suspects on the pro-tour but this is actually a good deal for the BBC.
(Dr) John Cameron