Sky Sports' PGA Tour future in jeopardy

Sky Sports

A ground-breaking new deal has put a question mark over Sky Sports’ future as the UK’s main broadcaster of the PGA Tour.

The tour has announced a new $2bn, 12-year partnership with Discovery that, from next year, will see the media conglomerate take over global television and multi-platform live rights in 220 territories.

Discovery, which controls Eurosport, will also have the option to strike sub-licensing deals with some existing rights holders. 

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Sky Sports current deal with the PGA Tour runs until 2022 and it isn’t thought to be affected by this announcement. However, the tour’s plan to roll out PGA Tour Live – its own subscription-based digital platform that offers select-hole, live-streaming coverage – in the UK from next year could post more immediate problems for the broadcaster.

Sky Sports 2

Sky Sports has lost a number of its deals in recent years.

BT took the exclusive rights for the Champions League and Europa League in a £1.2bn deal in March 2017. It also lost rights to Aviva Premiership rugby and European rugby to the same channel, with Pro14 rugby set to move to little-known Premier Sports from next season.

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Sky also recently saw its live rights to Spanish football go to another relatively new player in the industry, Eleven Sports.

The US PGA Championship abandoned Sky Sports last year, whilst rumours abound that live coverage of The Masters could soon make a return to the BBC.

Sky Sports’ existing deal with the European Tour, meanwhile, expires at the end of this season.

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