Viacom18, one of India’s leading entertainment networks, has secured long-term domestic rights to SA20, the new South African Twenty20 league.

Under a 10-year agreement, the broadcaster will have exclusive rights to show all matches from each season of the competition.

The inaugural edition of the SA20 will begin on January 10, 2023, and feature six teams competing in 33 matches across six venues.

The six teams – Joburg Super Kings, Pretoria Capitals, Durban’s Super Giants, Sunrisers Eastern Cape, Paarl Royals, and MI Cape Town – are owned by groups that have teams across various global leagues including the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Graeme Smith, the SA20 league commissioner and former South Africa captain, said: “This long-term partnership between the SA20 and Viacom18 as our official Indian broadcaster is a catalyst that supports our ambitions to build the world’s second biggest league.

“With six IPL owners expanding their brands in South Africa, Viacom18 is the perfect partner to take the SA20 into the homes of the passionate and cricket-loving Indian.

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“The benefits to domestic cricket will be far-reaching with more South African players exposed to a global cricket audience and a stimulus to build a strong and sustainable cricket ecosystem. At SA20, we look forward to working with the dynamic team at Viacom18 to build a world-class league.”

Anil Jayaraj, Viacom18 Sports chief executive, added: “We continue to offer fans an immersive and engaging experience by strengthening our sports portfolio with cricket action through SA20. 

“T20 is the most popular cricket format with Indian fans. The history and legacy of South Africa cricket and the popularity of South African cricketers in India make it a thrilling proposition for cricket fans in India. We expect significant viewership and fan engagement as the event will be played in prime-time.”

Viacom18, which is owned by Indian conglomerate Reliance and US media group ViacomeCBS, recently announced that its JioCinema streaming platform will livestream all the matches from soccer’s upcoming 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The addition of the SA20 strengthens Viacom18’s portfolio of sporting events, which includes the IPL, European soccer’s LaLiga, Serie A, and Ligue 1, basketball’s NBA, athletics’ Diamond League, and top ATP tennis and BWF badminton events.