Super League agrees new Sky Sports deal for 2020 TV rights

Credit: Zac Goodwin/PA Wire/PA Images

The Betfred Super League has reached an agreement with Sky Sports over 2020 rights fees following its suspension due to the global health pandemic.

The new deal, which was also agreed by the Rugby Football League (RFL), will enable the competition to plan up until the end of the 2021 season with ‘greater financial certainty’.

Super League executive chairman Robert Elstone stated: “Rugby League’s 25-year relationship with Sky Sports has been built on a genuine partnership that has never been more evident than during the COVID-19 crisis. 

“We are pleased to have reached an agreement which acknowledges the disruption to Sky Sports’ Super League schedules but gives our clubs greater financial certainty moving forward in these challenging times.

“Our resilience will continue to be tested – but we are grateful to Sky for their ongoing support.”

The agreement is reliant on the sport resuming its operations when the government and public health service allows, seemingly ending any speculation that the Super League could opt to prematurely conclude its campaign.

Upon the announcement of the new deal, via Super League’s website, it highlighted that the competition ‘recognises the huge disruption to this season’s fixture calendar, and the significant impact it has had on broadcasting schedules’.

Whilst other sporting events have started to resume, the Betfred Super League has yet to announce its resumption date with Elstone stating last month that there are ‘potential season start dates are all being considered as part of the extensive work going into fixtures scheduling’.

Additionally, the executive chairman has also previously expressed his opinion that the competition is ‘exploring all opportunities to deliver live rugby league in front of crowds’.