The World Bowls Tour and English Indoor Bowling Association have announced a new ground-breaking partnership with Premier Sports which will provide bowls fans with the most comprehensive television coverage in the sport’s history.
Over 260 hours of indoor bowls will be broadcast on Premier Sports in 2013, giving the sport complete all-year-round exposure on one network for the first time.
Premier Sports’ coverage will begin in February and includes a wide range of tournaments and events on the World Bowls circuit.
There will be extensive coverage of the World Bowls Tour International Open, PBA Masters, National Under-25s, EIBA Singles Finals, England Internationals, World Pairs and the brand new Premier Threes events.
Horizon Solutions, who have a strong track record in producing Bowls events on television, will handle the year-round coverage for Premier Sports.
The subscription sports channel is available on Sky channel 428, making it accessible to over 10 million homes in the UK.
Since inception in 2010 the broadcaster has focused on identifying sports that are not covered in-depth on mainstream UK television but have a loyal and passionate following.
Bowls will now sit alongside the channel’s existing coverage of Blue Square Bet Premier football, RFL Championship rugby league, French Top 14 rugby union, NASCAR racing, boxing, handball and ice hockey, with subscribers able to enjoy top quality live action every week of the year.
Richard Sweeney, CEO of Premier Sports, said: “We look forward to delivering the best Indoor Bowls from around the UK all year long.
“We have been very impressed with the loyal following Bowls has in the UK and the commitment and passion of its players and administrators.
“Now they have the opportunity to really get behind the weekly TV coverage that will become even more extensive if the support is there.”
Peter Thompson, Chief Executive, EIBA Ltd said: “We are delighted to be part of this major initiative for the sport of Indoor Bowls.
“It provides weekly exposure for our top competitive bowlers and showcases the sport, including the new shorter and faster format of Premier Threes, to a far wider audience than ever before.
“This will introduce the sport to new audiences and encourage them to become part of the sport.
“The promotion of the sport is a key strategy for the EIBA on behalf of its Clubs and with the same vision being shared by Premier Sports, Horizon and the World Bowls Tour this partnership will only strengthen this objective.
“I would ask that members and clubs take up the offers available to subscribe so that we can continue to grow and develop bowls on television.”
Bowls has a tradition of attracting strong TV audiences and Richard Maddison, CEO of World Bowls Tour Ltd, speaking from the recent Scottish Open event in Perth added: “World Bowls Tour are really pleased to be a part of this exciting and bold initiative that gives the sport of bowls a weekly, all year round presence on television for the first time in history.
“With Premier Sports, Horizon and the EIBA this partnership in events, TV hours and regular programmes will truly develop and strengthen all aspects of the sport.
“As WBT add to the professional circuit over the ensuing months we believe that the sport of Bowls has never been better placed to face the future.”
A special website www.lovebowls.com has been commissioned to provide fans with all the information on the Premier Sports coverage including, dates, schedules, venues and times.
Special launch offers including money back to clubs, for every subscription, to develop youth players will be published on the site in the coming weeks.
In addition to the new Premier Sports deal, bowls will continue to receive exposure on terrestrial television as the BBC will again broadcast live coverage of the World Indoor Championships on BBC Two and Red Button, with the 2013 tournament starting on January 21.
To subscribe to Premier Sports please visit premiersports.tv or call 0871 663 9000.