‘Back-to-back Ashes series could dilute interest’

Sunday, January 30, 2011

SYDNEY - Australia’s leading experts on sports broadcasting, Colin Smith, has warned that back-to-back Ashes series could dilute interest in the oldest rivalry in cricket.

Smith, who helped broker Cricket Australia’s current telecast agreement with Channel Nine, which expires in 2013, said there was a risk of there being too much of a good thing.

“You’ve got to be really careful of swamping the game, because that can be a real issue,” The Sydney Morning Herald quoted Smith, as saying.

“The concept could be you give it a fillip to television audiences in Australia and in the UK, that’s the upside of it. The downside of it is that it’s basically two series in a row - it becomes less attractive and there’s less public interest,” he said.

“I just think in terms of how you promote, you’ve got to be really careful of it. You don’t get the market causing you a problem,” Smith said.

Smith’s comments follow report in The Herald that Australia would host a five-Test Ashes series in the 2013-14 season just months after trying to regain the urn in England in 2013.

Smith, the head of LEK’s regional sports, gaming, media and entertainment division, played a role in orchestrating the AFL’s lucrative, five-year, 780 million dollar TV deal and is also working with CA on its next TV rights deal. (ANI)

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