Channel Seven wins Rugby League World Cup TV rights

Australian free-to-air broadcaster beats Nine and Fox to the punch.

Channel Seven wins Rugby League World Cup TV rights

Channel Seven has secured the broadcast rights in Australia to the 2017 Rugby League World Cup.

According to Australia's Daily Telegraph, the free-to-air network has seen off competition from Channel Nine and Fox Sports, which show the country's National Rugby League (NRL) for the opportunity to air the competition. The deal is reported to be worth AUS$10 million (US$7.55 million).

Major fixtures will be shown on Seven's main free-to-air channel, with the rest of the games on the 7mate digital platform.

IMG is currently selling the broadcast rights to the Rugby League World Cup internationally after agreeing an earlier deal with the Rugby League International Federation (RLIF).

"We spoke to our partners at Nine and Fox Sports but we always knew Seven wanted it,” said tournament director Mike Brown, speaking to the Telegraph. “It was a tender process and they were the keenest.

“It is a great result for rugby league to have the game on three networks next year. It gives us another reach and it’s on an AFL [Australian Football League] channel. It shows the dominance of our game."

The 2017 Rugby League World Cup will be played in Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea from 26th October to 2nd December next year. 14 teams will take part, with Australia the reigning champions.