ITV strikes BlackRock Masters deal- 18 Nov 2008 00:00:00
ITV Sport has agreed a new deal for the exclusive rights to broadcast coverage of the BlackRock Tennis Masters 2008 at the Royal Albert Hall.
The deal, struck with commercial rights agents IMG, will see live coverage and highlights of the tournament broadcast on ITV4 and ITV.com every day throughout the event which takes place between Tuesday 2nd to Sunday 7th December.
The tournament is the season finale to the BlackRock Tour of Champions, a year-long Tour that makes its way across Europe and the world and pits eight former tennis champions against each other in order to earn ranking points.
In order to play in a BlackRock Tour of Champions event, the player must no longer be active on the ATP Tour and have either been ranked number one in the world, a singles finalist in a Grand Slam Championship or a singles player on a winning Davis Cup team.
The singles field has now been confirmed with Pete Sampras and Stefan Edberg making their debuts, alongside, Goran Ivanisevic, John McEnroe, Cedric Pioline, Guy Forget and home wildcards Greg Rusedski and Jeremy Bates. In addition there will be an exhibition doubles event featuring Pat Cash, Henri Leconte, Mark Woodforde and the ever popular Mansour Bahrami, among others.
In addition to ITV4’s coverage, two matches will be broadcast exclusively live on ITV.com and via a new red button interactive service. The website will also feature behind the scenes video blogs and player interviews throughout the competition.
ITV’s coverage of the BlackRock Tennis Masters will be presented by Craig Doyle with commentary from John Lloyd and Simon Reed.