Channel 4 has been announced as the new broadcaster of the BDO World Darts Championships from 2017, after the BBC decided not to renew its TV rights deal.
In a two year deal announced today, Channel 4 will become the new terrestrial home of the BDO World Darts Championship from 2017-2018. Additional coverage will be available on BT Sport.
From January 2017 Channel 4 will broadcast live from Lakeside during the afternoon sessions of the men’s and women’s championships in addition to one of the semi-finals and the Women’s Final. All evening sessions will be aired on BT Sport alongside one of the semi-finals. The Men’s Final will air on both Channel 4 and BT.
All of the coverage from the Championships will be broadcast free-to-air on Channel 4 - with live coverage also available throughout the Championships on BT Sport.
Stephen Lyle, Commissioning Editor, Sport at Channel 4 said:
“We are delighted to agree this deal which sees Channel 4 become the home of BDO Darts on terrestrial TV, adding another popular sport to our schedules and keeping it free-to-air for fans. The darts is a British sporting institution and we look forward to bringing our unique Channel 4 approach to coverage of the Championships.”
Sue Williams, Chairman of the BDO, said:
“We took considerable care in selecting our broadcast partner and we are highly delighted that Channel 4 is that partner. Through its channels and BT Sport, all the sessions will be shown live with additional highlights shows and innovative content online. We were particularly pleased with Channel 4’s fresh approach and new ideas and the track record they have for this with other sports in their portfolio. We believe this will appeal to a broader demographic of viewers.
Shortly after the last BDO World Darts Championships, it was revealed that the BBC had decided not to bid for a new TV rights deal. The BBC had broadcast the Championships since it began in 1978.