LOS ANGELES AND LONDON, October 12, 2011 —
Network to Expand Coverage from First Monday through Final Sunday
During Prestigious Grass-Court Tournament
Tennis Channel and the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (AELTC) have agreed to a multi-year extension of Wimbledon Primetime, the network’s nightly program that brings its audience the day’s best tennis, encore matches, original features and coverage from in and around Wimbledon Village. Today Ian Ritchie, chief executive, AELTC; and Ken Solomon, chairman and CEO, Tennis Channel; announced the extension, which runs through 2023.
Solidifying the network’s relationship with the most prestigious grass-court tennis tournament in the world – and the sport’s oldest of its four major competitions – into the next decade, the new agreement also expands Tennis Channel’s overall Wimbledon coverage. Beginning in 2012, Wimbledon Primetime will air each evening of the two-week tournament. The network will also produce a 30-minute preview edition of the program that will run during the two weeks leading up to the event. This marks a significant broadening of Wimbledon Primetime’s nightly reach, which previously had started on the first day of tournament play and concluded midway through the second week.
“We are most pleased to extend and expand our relationship with Tennis Channel,” said Ritchie. “Their nightly Wimbledon Primetime coverage has been a great success since its debut in 2008, bringing the best of the Championships, Wimbledon, to the largest possible American audience during the highest-viewer evening hours. The telecast allows fans to stay on top of everything that’s happened each day with the editorial scope and depth of an organization whose sole, year-round focus is the sport of tennis.”
“We’re deeply honored to extend our relationship with the All England Lawn Tennis Club for the coming decade, one of the most beautiful and hallowed places in the world of athletic competition,” said Solomon. “Wimbledon Primetime has become a nightly institution for both die-hard tennis fans as well as more casual viewers who watch and enjoy world-class sports.”
Wimbledon Primetime has been a pillar of the network’s complete Championships coverage since its premiere. Hosted by veteran sportscaster and Tennis Channel Grand Slam lead commentator Bill Macatee along with tennis legend Martina Navratilova, Wimbledon Primetime brought one of tennis’ most beloved events to prime-time audiences for the first time in U.S. television history. The program offers more than 100 hours of match play, analysis, player interviews, expert-guest features and complete highlights. Wimbledon Primetime also includes expert commentary and insight from former players Lindsay Davenport and Justin Gimelstob.
In addition to continued production of the network’s evening program, www.tennischannel.com features daily highlights, exclusive guest interviews, bloggers, columnists and other tournament-related content. The Wimbledon-themed sweepstakes and “Racquet Bracket” tournament prediction game have also proven to be popular on-line features.
Tennis Channel (www.tennischannel.com) is the only 24-hour, television-based multimedia destination dedicated to both the professional sport and tennis lifestyle. A hybrid of comprehensive sports, health, fitness, pop culture, entertainment, lifestyle and travel programming, the network is home to every aspect of the wide-ranging, worldwide tennis community. It also has the most concentrated single-sport coverage in television, with telecast rights to the US Open, Wimbledon, Roland Garros (French Open), Australian Open, Olympus US Open Series, ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events, top-tier WTA competitions, Davis Cup and Fed Cup by BNP Paribas, and Hyundai Hopman Cup. Tennis Channel is carried by eight of the top 10 video providers.
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