Pitch International, the UK-based sports marketing agency, has entered into a five-year partnership with the Cricket Ireland governing body for the sale of international team broadcast rights.
The agreement, announced yesterday (April 28), runs from 2022 to 2026 inclusive and covers both the men’s and women’s teams.
It represents an expansion of Pitch’s existing relationship with Cricket Ireland, which has so far seen it facilitate broadcast sales for home international matches of just the men’s team, around the world.
The new deal sees Pitch actually take ownership of Cricket Ireland’s rights, with the women’s team added and all international matches covered.
It follows growth in the broadcast reach of the Ireland men’s team in recent years.
Pitch’s portfolio of international cricket rights also includes those of the England and Wales Cricket Board, New Zealand Cricket, Cricket West Indies, Netherlands Cricket, and Cricket Scotland.
Warren Deutrom, chief executive of Cricket Ireland, said: “As Irish cricket grows in stature on the world stage, broadcast and digital rights are becoming a key income stream to support Cricket Ireland and its work in growing and improving the sustainability of our sport.
“Having worked closely with Pitch International as our agent in the broadcast market for so many years, we are delighted to formally welcome them as our official global broadcast partner. From experience, we are confident that Pitch provides the necessary expertise and reach into the global broadcast and digital marketplace.
“Not only will this agreement help grow the profile of our sport internationally, but it will also help to sustain the revenue for Cricket Ireland to invest back into the sport – our facilities, our high-performance programs, our provincial unions and programs at club and grassroots levels.
“As a new aspect of our latest broadcast deal, we will offer women’s cricket content to the market for the first time. Almost 750,000 views of our women’s international live streams in 2021 has demonstrated the interest in Irish women’s cricket, and this will be set to grow significantly further with the senior squad’s entry into the ICC Women’s Championship.
“As we don’t want to just be a major nation in world cricket, but a major sport in Ireland, we have ensured the new broadcast deal carves out our ability to offer attractive opportunities for with domestic broadcast partners in Ireland – and we will explore these.”
Guy Le Grew, chief revenue officer at Pitch International, added: “As the landscape of world cricket continues to evolve, our focus is on driving reach and, revenue for Irish cricket and to enhance the profile of Ireland’s international sides both at home and abroad.
“Cricket Ireland have consistently secured high-quality opposition for both their men’s and women’s teams, which in turn provides us all with exciting opportunities in broadcast markets around the world.”