For those frustrated by the restrictive coverage on offer by Sky Sports this season, there reportedly is good news that the new ATP and WTA Tour TV rights holder is about to unveil a channel dedicated entirely to tennis, which, they claim, will to take the sport to a huge audience in the UK and Ireland.
It's an exciting moment for Sky Sports as we launch a new home for tennis fans, and Sky Sports Tennis will give millions of homes easy access to watch the best players in the world all year round. We're proud to be the undisputed home of live sport for fans in the UK and Ireland, and this new channel will add value for our customers, enabling them to enjoy even more of the sports they love. Jonathan Licht, Sky Sports Managing Director
There has been criticism over Sky’s return as the lead broadcaster after fans had become accustomed to Amazon Prime’s offering that allowed streaming of all matches, live and on demand.
Fears that the sport will be less accessible have been allayed as Sky Sports unveils its full plan for tennis coverage in the coming years.
Jonathan Licht, Sky Sports Managing Director, said: “It’s an exciting moment for Sky Sports as we launch a new home for tennis fans, and Sky Sports Tennis will give millions of homes easy access to watch the best players in the world all year round.
“We’re proud to be the undisputed home of live sport for fans in the UK and Ireland, and this new channel will add value for our customers, enabling them to enjoy even more of the sports they love.”
Sky Sports will broadcast more live tennis than anywhere else, bringing over 4,000 matches from more than 80 tournaments a year on the ATP and WTA Tours, as well as full coverage of the US Open, all exclusively live.
The introduction of the new channel comes following the acquisition of the US Open, ATP and WTA Tour rights last year, and will add to the line-up of dedicated sports channels offered by Sky, meaning more value for customers.
Sky Sports Tennis will be available to Sky Sports customers with Complete, Action and Arena packages from 11 February, and viewers will be able to access multiple live court streams at the same time via the mobile app, the Sky TV app or red button and on NOW Bonus Streams, giving access to more live matches.
The first week of programming will feature live coverage from the Hologic WTA Tour tournament in Doha, where viewers can watch their favourite players such as Coco Gauff, Ons Jabeur, Aryna Sabalenka, Naomi Osaka and Iga Swiatek.
The action continues with the ATP Tour from Rotterdam, followed by an all-star line-up of Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray, Andrey Rublev and Daniil Medvedev on court in Doha from the 19 February.
Sky Sports Tennis coverage of the biggest events on the calendar will be analysed by former top British players Tim Henman and Laura Robson, presented by Gigi Salmon with the respected voice of Jonathan Overend on commentary.
As well as being a destination for live coverage, Sky Sports Tennis will be host to a range of additional programming including big-name interviews, behind-the-scenes access, and expert insights on some of the biggest matches and moments of the year.
Viewers can also quickly find the new channel by using the Voice Control function on the Sky Glass, Stream, or Q remote, using the search terms ‘New balls please’, ‘It was on the line’, ‘Sky Tennis’, ‘Sky Sports Tennis’ or ‘Tennis channel’.
Non-Sky subscribers can stream live matches with a NOW Sports Day and Month Membership, via Sky Sports Tennis, Sky Sports Arena, and Sky Sports Mix channels, while select catch-up content will be available on demand.
The Sky Sports Tennis channel will also be available on Virgin Media and EE TV, and the multiple live court streams will be available to Virgin Media customers via the Sky Sports mobile app and red button, as well as on EE TV as NOW Bonus Streams.
The new channel will be found on Sky Channel 408 from 11 February, moving to Sky Channel 407 on 13 February, where it will remain.
For further access, news and results, fans will also be able to follow the sport and their favourite players via Sky Sports News, the Sky Sports app, on SkySports.com and via Sky Sports social channels.
Coverage will be sponsored by Lexus, the new ‘Presenting Partner’ of Sky Sports Tennis.