Telenet secures Hockey Pro League rights in Belgium
Telenet, the cable and telecoms operator in Belgium, has agreed a new rights deal with the FIH, field hockey's governing body, to broadcast all matches of the national team in the new Hockey Pro League.
Telenet will be the host broadcaster for all 16 matches played in Belgium each year by the men's and women's teams in the Pro League, which launches next year, and it will also show all 144 Pro League matches as well as the showpiece grand final events across multiple platforms.
The rights deal runs to 2022 and was struck directly with the FIH, which last year bought back its global media rights from Star India, the pay-TV broadcaster owned by Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox, despite being only three years into an eight-year deal (Star retained rights in India, Sri Lanka and Nepal).
Andy Oram, FIH TV and broadcast director, said: “Belgium is one of the strongest nations in the Hockey Pro League and this partnership with Telenet further enhances our global strategy to deliver World Class production and content. This partnership is an important step for FIH in order to bring this game-changing new competition to sports fans across the world.
“We are delighted to be continuing our productive working relationship with Telenet. They have made a significant contribution to hockey in recent years and will remain key players in helping to aid hockey’s continued growth at what is a very exciting time for the sport.”
Manu Leroy, director of sports at Telenet, added: “We are convinced that the Hockey Pro League will provide a major boost to hockey, taking it to the next level not only in Belgium but across the world.”
The inaugural season of the Hockey Pro League begins on 19 January with Spain's men's team hosting Belgium.
The nine women’s and nine men’s teams will play each other home and away between January and June, with the top four teams competing to determine the winner in a grand final later in June.