|Launched||1 August 2013|
|Owned by||BT Group|
|Picture format||576i (16:9 SDTV)|
|Audience share||0.34% (1)|
0.04% (ESPN) (September 2018 , BARB)
|Slogan||Take them all on.|
|Country||United Kingdom, Ireland|
|Broadcast area||United Kingdom|
|Headquarters||Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London|
|Sister channel(s)||BT Sport ESPN|
AMC from BT (UK only)
|Sky||Channel 413 (1)|
Channel 414 (2)
Channel 417 (3)
Channel 423 (ESPN)
Channel 490 (Box Office HD)
Channel 867 (1 HD)
Channel 868 (2 HD)
Channel 869 (3 HD)
Channel 872 (ESPN HD)
|Virgin Media (UK)||Channel 527 (1 HD)|
Channel 528 (2 HD)
Channel 529 (3 HD)
Channel 530 (ESPN HD)
Channel 531 (1)
Channel 532 (2)
Channel 533 (3)
Channel 534 (ESPN)
Channel 555 (4K UHD)
|BT||Channel 408 (1)|
Channel 409 (2)
Channel 410 (3)
Channel 411 (ESPN)
Channel 430 (1 HD)
Channel 431 (2 HD)
Channel 432 (3 HD)
Channel 433 (4K UHD)
Channel 434 (ESPN HD)
Channel 450–455 (Extra 1–6)
Channel 465–470 (Extra 1–6 HD)
Channel 494 (Box Office HD)
|Plusnet||Channel 408 (1)|
Channel 409 (2)
Channel 410 (3)
Channel 411 (ESPN)
Channel 430 (1 HD)
Channel 431 (2 HD)
Channel 432 (3 HD)
Channel 434 (ESPN HD)
Channel 450–455 (Extra 1–6)
|TalkTalk TV||Channel 408 (1)|
Channel 409 (2)
Channel 410 (3)
Channel 411 (ESPN)
Channel 450–455 (Extra 1–6)
|Eir Vision||Channel 422 (1 SD/HD)|
Channel 423 (2 SD/HD)
Channel 424 (3 SD/HD)
Channel 425 (ESPN SD/HD)
|Vodafone Ireland||BT Sport 1, 2, 3 and ESPN|
|BT Sport Player||Watch live (1, UK only)|
Watch live (2, UK only)
|Virgin TV Anywhere||Watch live (1, UK only)|
Watch live (2, UK only)
Watch live (3, UK only)
Watch live (ESPN, UK only)
BT Sport is a group of sports television channels provided by BT Consumer; a division of BT Group in the United Kingdom and Ireland that was launched on 1 August 2013. The channels are based at the former International Broadcast Centre at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London. BT Sport is available on the BT TV, Sky and Virgin Media television platforms in the UK and Sky, Eir TV and Vodafone TV in the Republic of Ireland.
BT Sport holds exclusive live UK and Republic of Ireland TV rights to 46 Premier League matches per season, all Australia's home cricket matches, the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League UFC, National League, Ligue 1, the Bundesliga, the FA Community Shield, the FA Trophy and the European Rugby Challenge Cup, the Premiership Rugby Cup, MotoGP, and the FIH Hockey World League. They are also the official broadcast partner of the European Rugby Champions Cup and Premiership Rugby and BDO World Darts Championship and . BT Sport also holds shared rights to the FA Cup with the BBC, the Scottish Professional Football League with Sky Sports and BBC Alba. In 2015, BT Sport launched their showcase service in SD and in HD in 2017. The SD service closed on 9 May 2017 and the HD service in 2018.
- 1 History
- 2 Programming
- 2.1 Football coverage
- 2.1.1 Presenters
- 2.1.2 Pundits and Commentators
- 2.1.3 Reporters
- 2.1.4 Premier League
- 2.1.5 Champions League and Europa League
- 2.1.6 FA Cup
- 2.1.7 FA Community Shield
- 2.1.8 Vanarama National League
- 2.1.9 FA Trophy
- 2.1.10 Scottish Professional Football League
- 2.1.11 Bundesliga
- 2.1.12 Ligue 1
- 2.1.13 A-League
- 2.2 Rugby union coverage
- 2.3 Cricket coverage
- 2.4 Tennis coverage
- 2.5 Motorsport coverage
- 2.6 American sports coverage
- 2.7 Combat sports coverage
- 2.8 BDO Darts coverage
- 2.1 Football coverage
- 3 Previous coverage
- 4 Magazine shows
- 5 Classic sport
- 6 References
- 7 External links
News of BT's first foray into sports broadcasting first came about on 12 June 2012 when it was announced that they had won the rights to 38 live Premier League matches for three seasons from the 2013-14 season, beating American broadcast partner ESPN who had held the shared rights with Sky Sports the previous season. BT announced at the same time that it would be launching its own channel for its new football coverage. The news followed speculation that ESPN was reconsidering its position in the UK. The following months also saw BT win rights to Premiership Rugby and its associated 7s Series, and American, Brazilian, French and Italian top-flight football. On 25 February 2013, BT agreed to acquire ESPN's UK and Ireland TV channels business, consisting of ESPN and ESPN America (ESPN Classic was not included). BT would continue to broadcast at least one ESPN branded channel since the deal's completion date of 31 July, as part of its BT Sport package of services. The value of the deal was not disclosed, but BT was understood to be paying "low tens of millions"..
On 2 May 2013, BT Sport 1 and BT Sport 2 were added to the BT TV EPG, followed by Sky the next day along with an on-screen message that the channel was coming soon. On Sky, the channels replaced BT's placeholders, Sailing 1 and 2. The BT-owned terrestrial feeds of Sky Sports 1 and 2, which were also used for Top Up TV, were dropped on 1 July in favour of BT Sport 1 and 2.. The Channels started broadcasting on 1 August 2013, on the same day ESPN America ceased to broadcast and ESPN became ESPN from BT Sport; broadcasting most of ESPN America's content. BT signed a wholesale deal with Virgin Media on 15 August 2013 bringing the channels free of charge to customers on the TV XL package.
An interactive service, BT Sport Extra, launched in September 2014, broadcasting additional content at selected times. One video stream was available at launch which expanded to seven in August 2015. BT Sport Extra can be accessed directly from the EPG on YouView boxes and from the red button on Sky and Virgin Media.
On 9 June 2015, ESPN from BT Sport was rebranded BT Sport ESPN.
On 1 August 2015, BT launched three new channels: BT Sport Europe, a dedicated channel for its coverage of European football and rugby union including the UEFA Champions League, Europa League and rugby challenge and champions cups; BT Sport Showcase, a free-to-air only HD channel which would show a number of sporting events unencrypted via Freeview such as Champions League; and BT Sport Ultra HD, the UK's first and only 4K television channel which will broadcast a number of events in ultra-high-definition exclusively on BT TV. On 4 August 2016, BT Sport Europe was renamed BT Sport 3 and BT Sport Ultra HD to BT Sport 4K UHD. A similar channel to BT Sport Showcase was made available on Virgin media named BT Sport Free.
In the UK, BT Sport is available in standard definition with all BT TV packages for BT Broadband customers, programming is also available in high definition to BT Infinity customers for an additional fee. BT Sport 4K UHD is only available on BT TV.
On Sky and Plusnet TV BT Sport 1 only is currently offered for free to broadband subscribers as 'BT Sport Lite', regardless of what subscription they have. Customers who wish to view the remaining channels can subscribe to the 'BT Sport Pack' in either standard or high definition. BT also provide broadband subscribers access to the channels via the BT Sport online player and mobile app. BT Sport pack Subscribers also receive BoxNation in standard definition only and Sky UK customers also have exclusive access to AMC from BT in the relevant definition.
Virgin Media customers receive BT Sport 1, 2, 3 and ESPN in HD as part of their "Full House" bundle however, they do not receive BoxNation or AMC from BT.
TalkTalk TV customers must subscribe to the BT Sport Pack in order to receive the entire range of channels.
In the Republic of Ireland, BT Sport channels (except 4K UHD) are bundled with Eir Sport subscriptions across all platforms, as a part of a deal BT had with what was Setanta Sports back then. The deal means BT Sport 1, 2, 3, ESPN and BoxNation are part of the Eir Sport Pack in the Republic, along with Eir Sport 1 and Eir Sport 2.
In addition Freeview HD customers received BT Sport Showcase and Virgin Media customers received BT Sport Free. They closed on 30 June 2018.
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Plans for the channels launch came about when it was announced in June 2012 that the broadcast rights to the Premier League from the 2013–14 to 2015–16 season were awarded to BT and Sky, outbidding existing broadcaster ESPN for the rights. BT showed 38 live matches from the Premier League each season, including 18 first pick matches, from the 2013/14 season to the end of the 2015/16 season.
In October 2012 BT announced it had also agreed deals to air Serie A, Ligue 1, Brasileirão and Major League Soccer, all of which were previously broadcast on ESPN, as well as Premiership Rugby.
On 25 February 2013, BT announced that it had acquired ESPN's UK channels and their sports broadcasting rights, including rights to the FA Cup, UEFA Europa League, Scottish Premier League, Bundesliga and NASCAR. This led to the shutting down of ESPN Classic and ESPN America in favour of the BT Sport channels.
On 7 May 2013, BT Sport acquired the rights to air Ultimate Fighting Championship events and taped programming in the UK and Ireland for three years, from 1 August. Two days later it was announced that BT Sport had acquired an exclusive five-year deal to broadcast MotoGP races from the 2014 season, including free practices and qualifying as well as full coverage of Moto2 and Moto3. BT Sport also broadcasts the FA WSL, A-League and programming from Red Bull Media House.
On 9 May 2013, BT announced that they had acquired the exclusive UK TV rights to MotoGP along with the Moto2 and Moto3 championships.
Later in May BT Sport acquired rights to the Football Conference for two years with 25-30 live games a season, including the end-of-season play-offs.
On 9 November 2013, BT announced a £897 million deal with UEFA to broadcast the Champions League and Europa League exclusively on BT Sport from the 2015–16 season for three years. The deal will end two decades of the competition being broadcast free-to-air on ITV, although BT stated that the finals of both competitions and at least one match per season involving each participating British team would still be broadcast free-to-air.
Pundits and Commentators
|Steve Bower||Lead commentator|
|Wayne Boyce||Lead commentator|
|Simon Brotherton||Lead commentator|
|Tim Caple||Lead commentator|
|Jon Champion||Lead commentator|
|Ian Darke||Lead commentator|
|Paul Dempsey||Lead commentator|
|Peter Drury||Lead commentator|
|Dave Farrar||Lead commentator|
|Darren Fletcher||Lead commentator|
|Owen Hargreaves||Co-commentator & pundit|
|Jermaine Jenas||Co-commentator & pundit|
|Martin Keown||Co-commentator & pundit|
|Dan Mason||Lead commentator|
|Steve McManaman||Co-commentator & pundit|
|Guy Mowbray||Lead commentator|
|Jonathan Pearce||Lead commentator|
|Robbie Savage||Co-commentator & pundit|
|Adam Summerton||Lead commentator|
|Chris Sutton||Co-commentator & pundit|
|Steve Wilson||Lead commentator|
BT Sport currently has the rights to show 42 live Premier League matches from the 2016–17 to 2018–19 seasons. Their packages (B and F) give BT the rights for 12 1st pick matches. The coverage for the current rights period see BT Sport showing live matches on Saturday evenings at 5:30 pm, they also show midweek matches. The rights to the Premier League are shared with Sky Sports, who have 126 live matches, and the BBC, who have highlights on Match of the Day. BT Sport Score is a weekly television programme broadcast on BT Sport during the football season. The programme was launched in 2016 to rival the BBC's Final Score and Sky Sports' Soccer Saturday. The programme updates viewers on the progress of association football games in the United Kingdom on Saturday afternoons between 2:30 pm and 5:30 pm. Mark Pougatch and Jules Breach present BT Sport Score with Breach giving updates on Fantasy football and social media. Pundits on the programme include Chris Sutton, Robbie Savage, Jermaine Jenas, Paul Ince, David James and Dean Saunders.
Premier League matches are anchored by presenter Jake Humphrey. Lead commentary is provided by Darren Fletcher and Ian Darke. Co-commentators include Steve McManaman and John Hartson. The main studio pundits include Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Rio Ferdinand, Owen Hargreaves, Jermaine Jenas, Martin Keown, Richard Dunne and Paul Scholes. Des Kelly is the main touchline reporter.
From 2019 to 2022 BT will show 52 live Premier League matches per season (packages A&G). This includes 20 second picks and 12 fifth picks. Weekend coverage will also move from Saturday evening to Saturday lunchtime.
Champions League and Europa League
James Richardson hosts the Goals Show every Champions League matchday with Julien Laurens, Raphael Honigstein James Horncastle and Andy Brassell joining as pundits to keep viewers up to date of all the scores and they can watch every goal go in live.
Additional commentators and co-commentators for the competitions include Ian Darke, Jon Champion, Derek Rae, Daniel Mann, Adrian Healey, Jonathan Pearce, Peter Drury, Paul Dempsey, Martin Tyler, Steve Bower, Simon Brotherton, Guy Mowbray, Kevin Keatings, Gary Taphouse, Rob Hawthorne, Bill Leslie, Tommy Smyth, Steve McManaman, Jim Beglin, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Rio Ferdinand, Owen Hargreaves, Paul Scholes, Stewart Robson, Efan Ekoku, Alan Smith, Darren Fletcher, Craig Burley, Robbie Savage, Danny Higginbotham, Glenn Hoddle, David Croten, Andy Hinchcliffe, Don Goodman, Garry Birtles, Ally McCoist, Steve Wilson, Lee Dixon and Don Hutchison.
BT Sport obtained the rights to the FA Cup through its acquisition of ESPN, who had one year remaining in their existing contract. In 2016, BT Group extended its contract with The Football Association to show up to 30 live games a season from the competition from 2018–19 to 2020–21.
FA Community Shield
Since 2015, BT Sport have had exclusive live coverage of the FA Community Shield. In 2017, Jake Humphrey presented, with Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and Glenn Hoddle. Ian Darke and Steve McManaman commented, and Des Kelly reported.
Vanarama National League
BT Sport has exclusive rights to the Vanarama National League covering 1 game a weekend. Matt Smith is the main presenter, with James Richardson the relief host, often being joined by pundits David James, Kevin Davies and Chris Hargreaves. Match commentator Adam Summerton is joined by co-commentator Adam Virgo in the commentary box. Steve Bower also commentates when his schedule allows, normally during matches broadcast during the international break.
BT have the full exclusive rights to the FA Trophy. BT Sport showed the 2015 FA Trophy Final live. BT Sport also showed the 2016 FA Trophy Final between Halifax Town and Grimsby Town live on 22 May as part of a double-header along with the 2016 FA Vase Final. In 2017 highlights of the semi-finals were shown on the channel during their National League highlights show. The same presentation team as the National League coverage is used, with Adam Summerton and Adam Virgo commentating.
Scottish Professional Football League
BT host rights to show 30 Scottish Premier League games a season, sharing the rights with Sky Sports and BBC Alba. Darrell Currie is the presenter, with studio pundits including Chris Sutton, Stephen Craigan, Ally McCoist, Terry Butcher, Alan Stubbs, Michael Stewart and Kevin Thomson. Rory Hamilton is the main match commentator, sometimes substituted by Rob MacLean. Sutton, Craigan and Stewart join him as co-commentators. Emma Dodds and Eilidh Barbour serve as the pitch-side reporters. From the 2016/17 season, BT Sport have aired a 30-minute preview show "Scottish Football Extra" before every live match. Also from the start of the 2016-17 season, BT Sport has been the home of exclusive live coverage of the Scottish League Cup, showing two or three live matches per round, from July through to the final in November.
BT Sport have full exclusive rights to the Bundesliga. The match commentators are Tim Caple, Dan Mason, Dave Farrar and Paul Dempsey. Don Hutchison, Danny Gabbidon, Chris Perry and Efan Ekoku all appear as co-commentators.
BT currently have exclusive rights to Ligue 1. Jonathan Pearce, John Anderson, Oliver Wilson, Seb Hutchinson and Trevor Harris are the main match commentators. Whilst Clive Allen, Kevin Gallacher, Paul McVeigh and Leroy Rosenior appear as co-commentators.
Rugby union coverage
BT Sport had exclusive live rights to the Anglo-Welsh Cup until its final competition in 2017–18, as well as being senior broadcast partner of Premiership Rugby. The original Premiership coverage deal ran until the 2016/17 season and allowed BT Sport to exclusively broadcast up to 69 live games per season. The Aviva Premiership's viewing figures rose by 40% in TV audiences in its first season with BT Sport. A new deal was signed in March 2015 to cover the Premiership Rugby until 2021 covering up to 80 matches a season from 2017–18 and introducing an extended highlights programme from the 2015-16 season. Subsequently, in 2017 Channel 5 announced a deal that would see them simulcast five matches per season for the remaining duration of the deal. BT originally shared rights to European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR)'s champions and challenge cups with Sky Sports, each broadcaster will exclusively broadcast up to 30 pool matches, 2 quarter-finals and 1 semi-final from each competition with the finals being shown by both. BT also received first pick on Champions Cup matches involving Premiership Rugby clubs. For four seasons from the 2018-19 season, BT Sport will become the official broadcast partner of the Champions and Challenge cups and broadcast up to 134 matches per season. The Challenge Cup will be shown exclusively on BT Sport whilst broadcasting of the Champions Cup will be shared with Channel 4 in the UK and TV3 in the Republic of Ireland with both channels simulcasting one match from each round and the final.
Craig Doyle is the main presenter of the coverage whilst Lawrence Dallaglio acts as the main match analyst. Sarra Elgan and Martin Bayfield also present live action whilst further reporting comes from Tim Cocker, Jill Douglas and Chris Hollins. Austin Healey, Brian O'Driscoll, Ben Kay and Ugo Monye provide further punditry and co-commentary. BT Sport usually have one forward and one back acting as co-commentators on every match so one of Dallagio or Kay, along with one of Healey, Monye or O'Driscoll join Nick Mullins, Alastair Eykyn, Martin Gillingham, Andrew Cotter, Gareth Rhys Owen, Andrew McKenna or Sam Roberts in the commentary box. Occasionally guest pundits and guest co-commentators are used.
In August 2015, it was announced that BT Sport had claimed the rights for Australia's home matches for five years starting in the 2016-17 season. This means that BT would show The Ashes series between England and Australia in 2017-18 with the deal also including the Big Bash League, the Women's Ashes and the Women's Big Bash League.
Coverage is presented by Matt Smith alongside a rotating panel of Michael Vaughan, Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilchrist, Geoffrey Boycott, Graeme Swann and Damien Fleming. Commentary was provided by Alison Mitchell with two of the experts at one time, with Mitchell also reporting alongside Alex Gordon-Martin.
In January 2013, BT Sport signed a deal with the WTA to show 21 live tournaments from the women's tennis tour. The coverage can consist of up to 800 live hours of coverage every year until 2016, each season ending with the TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships. Coverage is presented by Lynsey Hipgrave with Martina Navratilova. Former Wimbledon champion Marion Bartoli, Anne Keothavong, David Mercer, Nick Mullins, Sam Smith and Alastair Eykyn are the commentators. BT now show 52 WTA tournaments.
BT Sport has rights to numerous British, European, American and global motorsport series both in live and highlights form.
MotoGP is BT Sport's flagship motorsports event and in addition to the main MotoGP event, BT shows the Moto2, Moto3, Red Bull Rookies and CEV Repsol championships. Suzi Perry, Craig Doyle and Gavin Emmett hosts alongside pundits Jeremy McWilliams, Colin Edwards, James Toseland and Neil Hodgson. Commentary is provided by Keith Huewen and Michael Laverty at six of the rounds with additional commentary from Colin Edwards, James Toseland, Gavin Emmett and Neil Hodgson during practice and qualifying and at the other rounds. BT also produces a highlights programme which is broadcast on Channel 5 on the Monday evening following the race. Gavin Emmett, former World Feed commentator, would take up the role of BT Sport's MotoGP reporter. The presenter who presented earlier host an analysis show called Chequered Flag aired after the MotoGP race has finished. Iwan Thomas previously presented.
IndyCar Series coverage on BT Sport is just world feed pictures and commentary usually from either ABC or NBC Sports. For ABC as of 2018, Allen Bestwick is the lap-by-lap commentator while former IndyCar drivers Scott Goodyear and Eddie Cheever serve as colour commentators. Then for NBC Sports Leigh Diffey is the lap-by-lap commentator with the other commentators being Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy. Perry presents coverage of the Indianapolis 500.
Other live series include the World Rally Championship, Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters and the Australian Supercars Championship where the world feed is taken directly from the host broadcaster. For World Series by Renault, BT Sport take world feed images but produce their own commentary, usually from Ben Evans and a journalist or racing driver. Highlights packages are also shown on BT Sport for series such as BRDC Formula 4 Championship, FIA European Formula Three Championship and the British Formula Three Championship.
American sports coverage
BT Sport shows extensive coverage of American sports, including Major League Baseball, American College Sports, Major League Lacrosse, and X Games. Also ESPN-produced American sports magazines, such as College Gameday and Baseball Tonight, are shown, often live. The majority of American sports coverage is broadcast on BT Sport ESPN.
Combat sports coverage
Mixed Martial Arts
BT Sport has the rights to all UFC numbered pay per view events, FOX events, Fox Sports 1 events all live along with The Ultimate Fighter and associated Countdown and magazine programming. In addition, BT Sport broadcasts live Cage Warriors events.
Since 2017 BT Sport has an association with BoxNation to show certain live fights from Frank Warren Promotions. Paul Dempsey is presenter alongside the likes of Jamie Moore and Steve Bunce. The main commentator is normally John Rawling, the main commentator on BoxNation, who commentates with Barry Jones among others. Ronald McIntosh is the designated main reporter.
BDO Darts coverage
It was announced in December 2014 that BT Sport would share the rights to the 2015 BDO World Darts Championship alongside BBC Sport. Coverage would be presented by Ray Stubbs for the first two years of their coverage. In August 2016 they signed a new 2-year deal to share rights this time with Channel 4. Currently Matt Smith presents live coverage with Chris Mason as studio pundit. Reshmin Chowdury is roving reporter. Commentators on BT Sport Darts coverage are John Rawling, Jim Proudfoot, Vassos Alexander, Paul Nicholson, Deta Hedman and Chris Mason, these are shared with Channel 4's coverage, as the commentary is produced independently.
BT previously held exclusive rights to the Serie A, Italy's top-flight association football league. Adam Summerton, Steven Wyeth, Wayne Boyce and Simon Brotherton were the match commentators. Co-commentators included Stewart Robson, Nigel Spackman, Tony Dorigo and Richard Hughes. From the start of the 2018-19 season, coverage moved to Eleven Sports.
- Rugby Tonight - Wednesdays at 8:00 pm sees Craig Doyle, Ugo Monye and Ben Kay present a debate about rugby union. Their guests include current and former players and referees reviewing and previewing the Aviva Premiership and France's Top 14.
- MotoGP Tonight - Presented by Craig Doyle and Iwan Thomas every Tuesday night following a race weekend, MotoGP and motorbike racing are discussed in front of a live studio audience.
- Motorsport Tonight - Aired every Tuesday night whenever MotoGP isn't shown, Abi Griffiths is joined by guests from the world of motorsport. Highlights are also shown of motorsport events broadcast on BT Sport.
- UFC: Beyond The Octagon - Presented by Caroline Pearce alongside Gareth A Davies
- Boxing Tonight - Presented by Paul Dempsey
- Premier League Tonight - Saturdays at 8 pm sees Jake Humphrey and a team of experts present the latest news and gossip from the Premier League.
- European Football Show - Sunday evenings sees James Richardson and a team of experts discuss the latest news regarding the European football.
- BT Sport Score - Saturdays at 2:30 pm, keeps up with the latest scores across the UK presented by Mark Pougatch who is joined by various pundits.
- UEFA Champions League Magazine - Fridays at 7:00 pm.
BT Sport's weekday daytime schedules often include sporting action from yesteryear. Football features heavily and includes league matches from the 1970s and 1980s from both the ITV Sport, including full editions of The Big Match, and the BBC's Match of the Day archives. Also featured are FA Cup matches from the 1970s to the present day and UEFA Champions League matches. Other sporting action includes boxing matches from the ESPN and ITV Sport archives as well as MotoGP races, BDO Darts and Ashes cricket.
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