Sky settles Ryder Cup dispute

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The Independent Online
THE RYDER CUP golf match, which pits the best of Europe against the United States, will be shown on BSkyB this month after a High Court settlement over television coverage. The European Tour and Ryder Cup Ltd had issued legal proceedings against BSkyB, demanding the contest be reinstated to Sky Sports after a move to screen it on Sky Box Office instead.

But before the dispute reached Mr Justice Hart yesterday, the litigants reached "an amicable settlement", which will mean a minimum of three hours' coverage a day of the Ryder Cup matches on Sky satellite channels.

Sky's main coverage will now be shown as a free event on Sky Box Office, with three hours a day available on Sky Sports 2, including the scheduled conclusion of the afternoon matches on each day.

The Ryder Cup organisers were angry that Sky was shifting coverage to Sky Box Office to prevent viewers of ONdigital, a rival broadcaster, watching the event. They receive only Sky Sports 1 and 3 as part of their package. The contest has been the flagship of Sky's golf coverage since 1993.

The latest match, at The Country Club, Brookline, Massachusetts, from 24 to 26 September, has been heavily advertised, with Sky Box Office showing "British" coverage, and the digital channel Sky Sports Extra showing it from an American perspective with coverage by NBC.