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ISN (London News Network)
(ITV Director of Sport);
(Controller of Sport Production)
ITV Sport programmes are broadcast on its main channel (the ITV Network) and on ITV4. although outside of football the only sport shown live on the ITV Network (ITV, STV and UTV) are the Rugby World Cup and French Open Tennis. The controller of ITV Sport is Niall Sloane, who reports to ITV's director of news, current affairs and sport Michael Jermey.
- 1 History
- 2 Current ITV Sport coverage
- 3 List of Current ITV Sport Rights
- 4 List of Current ITV Sport Personnel
- 5 Previous ITV Sport coverage
- 6 References
- 7 External links
ITV Sport was created as an umbrella brand for sport programmes on ITV Network, No programmes were actually produced by ITV Sport during this time, but rather the 15 ITV companies each produced sports shows for the umbrella brand, such as World of Sport by LWT and Thames.
In 2004, Granada and Carlton merged, creating a single company for all ITV franchises in England and Wales. The current ITV sport department was formed from the amalgamation of Granada Sport, Carlton's (previously Central's) sports department and ISN, the sport division of London News Network.
Former Sport channel
ITV used to have a dedicated sports channel on the ITV Digital network. Originally broadcasting UEFA Champions League football and ATP Masters Series tennis under the brand ONsport, it was renamed as the ITV Sport Channel. Lasting for just one football season, the ITV Sport Channel launched on Saturday 11 August 2001 and closed on Saturday 12 May 2002.
Current ITV Sport coverage
ITV holds joint rights for the 2018 FIFA World Cups with the BBC and has shown every World Cup live since 1966, on a shared basis with the BBC. The same arrangement has been in place for many years for coverage of the European Championships and both broadcasters shared coverage in 2016.
ITV has a long-standing association with European club football, broadcasting the UEFA Champions League every year from 1992 through to 2015. The broadcaster has held the rights exclusively from 1992 to 2003, before having shared it with Sky Sports since 2003. From 1997, ITV began the habit of broadcasting additional matches from the competition, at first showing one extra match per week on either the Granada Plus or Carlton Select cable channels before, following the launch of On Digital, it showed every key match through special bespoke channels Champions on 28 and Champions on 99, later ONsport 1 and ONsport 2, as well as on ITV2. This practice continued until 2009, when ITV reduced its output to just one live match per set in the competition. Live coverage ended in 2015 when BT Sport took over as exclusive broadcaster of the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League  although ITV's involvement with the competition remained through showing highlights of both competitions every week.
ITV football presenters
Between 2010-2014 ITV's main football host was Adrian Chiles, who joined the channel following his departure from the BBC. He presented the network's coverage of Champions League, FA Cup, and England Internationals. However, Chiles was replaced by Mark Pougatch in January 2015, and Pougatch now hosts all ITV's football coverage. Previous presenters of ITV's football coverage include Elton Welsby (1988-1992), Matthew Lorenzo (1993–94), Bob Wilson (1994–99), Desmond Lynam (1999-2004, Gabby Logan (2004–06) and Steve Rider (2006–10).
The British Touring Car Championship is another series ITV won away from the BBC, doing so in 2002 and in 2004, ITV introduced live coverage of the British Touring Car Championship for the first time on network television. Previously the BBC had shown occasional races live, but not to this extent. All meetings have been broadcast live by ITV Sport since. The races are now shown live on ITV4 and highlights are shown on ITV1 on Tuesday early morning on the corresponding weekend. Steve Rider has hosted the coverage since 2009 with Louise Goodman doing the pitlane reports.
The network has broadcast every Rugby World Cup live since 1991, being host broadcaster in 1991, 1999 and 2015. The only tournament that ITV has not shown has been the inaugural tournament held in 1987.
Since the 2008-09 season, ITV has televised highlights of the Premiership rugby.
From 2016, in reaction to satellite pay-TV bids from Sky Sports and BT Sport for coverage of the Six Nations Championship from 2017, the BBC agreed to lose exclusive rights to the tournament two years early in order for the BBC and ITV to jointly bid for the rights of the tournament to keep the Six Nations on free-to-air television. On 9 July 2015, the bid was accepted, and ITV and BBC became joint broadcasters of the Six Nations in the UK from 2016 to 2021. ITV will broadcast all England, Ireland and Italy home matches live, while BBC will broadcast all France, Scotland and Wales home matches live. Mark Pougatch will lead ITV's coverage of the Six Nations in 2016.
ITV obtained the rights to the Tour de France in 2002, replacing Channel 4 as the UK terrestrial broadcaster. The coverage is shown on ITV4, having aired in previous years on ITV2 and ITV3. Initially, live coverage was only broadcast at the weekend but since the 2010 Tour de France, ITV4 has broadcast daily live coverage of every stage, as well as the nightly highlights show. A new contract will see the event remain on the channel until 2015
ITV was the first broadcaster of darts in the United Kingdom. They covered many tournaments on World of Sport, including the News of the World Championship and the Winmau World Masters. When World of Sport ended ITV scaled back its darts coverage and dropped darts altogether in 1988 and with the exception of a single one-off event, the 1999 Match of the Century featuring PDC World Champion Phil Taylor against BDO World Champion Raymond van Barneveld, it would be almost 20 years before ITV resumed coverage of the sport when in 2007, ITV Sport announced they would be covering a new darts tournament, the Grand Slam of Darts, comprising champions of both the BDO and PDC tournaments. ITV covered the event between 2007 and 2010 - coverage then moved to Sky Sports.
On 14 June 2013 the PDC and ITV announced they had signed a new deal to cover four tournaments a year from 2013 to 2015. The tournaments are The Players Championship which they had covered from 2009 to 2010 and from December 2011 – present, The European Championship which they covered previously in 2008 and 2011, a new tournament called the Masters where the top 16 face in other in a three-day tournament, and the UK Open, otherwise known as the FA Cup of Darts, which had previously been shown on Sky.
In late 2014 it was announced ITV signed a deal to cover five darts tournaments in 2015 covering a new tournament entitled the World Series of Darts Finals. This means that in 2015 ITV will cover the Masters in January, the UK Open in March, the European Championship in October, the World Series of Darts Finals and Players Championship Finals in November.
In 2011 ITV Sport won the rights from the BBC to show the French Open and has shown the event since 2012. The bulk of the daily coverage is broadcast on ITV4 although both singles finals plus other weekend matches are shown on ITV. However, controversy reigned in 2014 when the main ITV channel stopped coverage of the men's final with four points left and sent the match to ITV4 thus denying viewers recording the match the chance to watch later and those with Freeview in some rural areas (where ITV4 may not be available on Freeview) the chance to see Nadal win an historic title. This did not deter ITV from immediately renewing its deal to show the tournament and ITV Sport will now show the French Open until 2018.
In the 1980s and early 1990s, ITV broadcast up to four Major Snooker Tournaments per season including The World Doubles Championships, The World Matchplay, The Mercantile Credit Classic and The British Open. Daytime action was sometimes shown on Channel 4. However, ITV decided to axe all of its snooker after the 1993 British Open and apart from a brief return to the green baize in 2000 and 2001, the sport was absent from ITV screens for more than 20 years.
Since 2010 ITV has shown a single weekend of a new format of the sport called Power Snooker and in February 2013 ITV4 broadcast the World Open. It was announced in June 2013 that ITV4 will cover the new tournament entitled the Champion of Champions from November 2013. In summer 2014 ITV and Barry Hearn announced they had signed a 5-year deal to cover 2 Snooker Tournaments per year, keeping coverage of the Champion of Champions and a new tournament called the World Grand Prix. In August 2015, World Snooker announced that ITV4 would televise the Snooker Shoot-Out in a three-year deal through to 2018.
Sports Life Stories
ITV Sport's award winning  documentary strand has featured the stories of many sporting greats. Sports Life Stories series one was first shown on ITV4 in 2012 and included episodes on Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dame Kelly Holmes, Fabrice Muamba, Barry McGuigan, Gareth Thomas, Brian Lara, Amir Khan and Lawrence Dallaglio. Series two first shown on ITV4 in 2013 included episodes on James Cracknell, David Weir, Nicola Adams, Jermain Defoe, Eric Bristow, Chris Eubank, Didier Drogba and Jimmy White. Series 3 returns in February 2015. Reporters on the series have included Gabriel Clarke, Ned Boulting, Adam Darke and Leon Mann.
List of Current ITV Sport Rights
- FIFA World Cup Finals: All matches live on BBC Sport & ITV Sport (2018-2022)
- UEFA European Championship Finals: All matches live on BBC Sport & ITV Sport (2016 and 2020)
- England Internationals: All England European Championship Qualifiers, World Cup Qualifiers & Friendly Matches Live on ITV (2014-2018, qualifier highlights on Sky Sports)
- European Qualifiers: 1 non home nations Match per Matchday Live on ITV4 and highlights on ITV (2014-2018, Live on Sky Sports)
- African Cup of Nations: Live Coverage & Highlights on ITV4 (Shared with Eurosport)
- UEFA Champions League: Highlights on ITV (Live on BT Sport) (2015-2018)
- UEFA Europa League: Highlights on ITV (Live on BT Sport) (2015-2018)
- Bundesliga: Highlights on ITV4 on Monday Nights (Live on BT Sport)
- FA Youth Cup: Selected Live Matches on ITV4
- Rugby World Cup: All matches Live on ITV & ITV4 (to 2015)
- RBS 6 Nations: All matches and highlights live on BBC Sport & ITV Sport (2016-2021)
- AVIVA Premiership: Highlights on ITV4 (to 2021) (Live on BT Sport)
- Premiership Rugby 7s: Highlights on ITV4 (Live on BT Sport)
- Anglo Welsh Cup: Highlights on ITV4 (Live on Sky Sports)
- French Open: Live on ITV & ITV4 (2015-2018)
- British Touring Cars Championship: Live on ITV4 (to 2021)
- Formula E: Live on ITV & ITV4 (Highlights on BT Sport)
- MotoGP: Highlights on ITV4 (Live on BT Sport)
- World Rally Championship: Highlights on ITV4 (Live on BT Sport)
- British Superbike Championship: Highlights on ITV4 (Live on British Eurosport)
- Isle of Man TT: Highlights on ITV4
- Ulster Grand Prix: Highlights on ITV4 (Shared with BBC Northern Ireland)
- Champion of Champions: Live on ITV4 (to 2019)
- World Grand Prix: Live on ITV4 (to 2019)
- World Snooker Shoot-Out: Live on ITV4 (to 2018)
- UK Open: Live on ITV4
- European Championship: Live on ITV4
- The Masters: Live on ITV4
- World Series of Darts Finals: Live on ITV4
- Players Championship Finals: Live on ITV4
- World Series of Darts: Delayed Coverage of 6 events on ITV4
- Tour de France: Live Coverage & Highlights on ITV4 (Shared with British Eurosport - to 2019)
- La Course by Le Tour de France: Live on ITV4 (Shared with British Eurosport)
- Tour of Britain: Live coverage & Highlights on ITV4
- Women's Tour of Britain: Highlights on ITV4
- Tour de Yorkshire: Live on ITV4 (Shared with British Eurosport)
- Vuelta a Espana: Highlights on ITV4 (Live on British Eurosport)
- British Road Race Championships: Highlights on ITV4
- Tour Series: Highlights on ITV4
List of Current ITV Sport Personnel
- Eni Aluko
- Craig Bellamy
- Slaven Bilic
- Ned Boulting
- Gabriel Clarke
- Peter Crouch
- Lee Dixon
- Iain Dowie
- Richard Dunne
- Danny Higginbotham (Also works for BT Sport & Talksport)
- Glenn Hoddle (Also works for BT Sport)
- Mark Hughes
- Roy Keane
- Christian Karembeu
- Sam Matterface (Also works for Talksport)
- Leon Mann
- Jacqui Oatley (Also works for BBC Sport & BBC Radio 5 Live)
- Mark Pougatch (Also works for BBC Radio 5 Live)
- Emmanuel Petit
- Louis Saha
- Gordon Strachan
- Joe Speight
- David Stowell
- Clive Tyldesley
- Howard Webb (Also works for BT Sport)
- Norman Whiteside
- Ian Wright (Also works for BBC Sport & BT Sport)
- Mark Pougatch (Also works for Channel 5)
- David Haye
- Duke McKenzie
- Dave Farrar (Also works for Channel 5)
- Richie Woodhall (Also works for Channel 5)
- Gabriel Clarke
- Ned Boulting
- Dan Dawson (Also works for PDC TV & Talksport)
- Rod Harrington Also works for Sky Sports)
- Chris Mason
- Jacqui Oatley
- Stuart Pyke (Also works for Sky Sports)
- John Rawling (Also works for BBC Sport & BT Sport)
- Alan Warriner-Little
- David Addison
- Gavin Emmett (Also works for BT Sport)
- Louise Goodman
- Jennie Gow (Also works for BBC Radio 5 Live & BBC Sport)
- Tim Harvey
- Keith Huewen (Also works for BT Sport)
- Barry Nutley (Also works for British Eurosport)
- Niall Mackenzie - ITV Sport 2014–present (Also works for British Eurosport)
- Steve Rider (Also works for Sky Sports)
- Julian Ryder (Also works for BT Sport)
- Maggie Alphonsi
- Martin Bayfield (Also works for BT Sport)
- Marco Bortolami
- Gabriel Clarke
- Lawrence Dallaglio (Also works for BT Sport)
- Gordon D'Arcy
- Jill Douglas
- David Flatman (Also works for BT Sport)
- Martin Gillingham (Also works for Sky Sports)
- Miles Harrison (Also works for Sky Sports)
- Scott Hastings
- Ben Kay (Also works for BT Sport)
- Sir Ian McGeechan
- Nick Mullins (Also works for BT Sport)
- Ugo Monye (Also works for BT Sport)
- Brian O'Driscoll (Also works for BT Sport)
- Mark Pougatch 
- Jason Robinson
- Gareth Thomas
- Shane Williams
- Jonny Wilkinson (Also works for Sky Sports)
- Sir Clive Woodward
- Jill Douglas
- Clive Everton (Also works for Sky Sports)
- Neal Foulds (Also works for Sky Sports & British Eurosport)
- Alan McManus (Also works for British Eurosport)
- Marion Bartoli (Also works for BBC Sport)
- Jim Courier (Also works for BBC Sport, CBS & Seven Network)
- Annabel Croft (Also works for BBC Sport, BBC Radio 5 Live, Sky Sports & British Eurosport)
- Lindsay Davenport (Also works for BBC Sport)
- Celina Hinchcliffe
- John Inverdale (Also works for BBC Sport)
- John Lloyd (Also works for BBC Sport)
- Nick Mullins (Also works for BBC Sport & BT Sport)
- Mark Petchey (Also works for BBC Sport)
- Simon Reed (Also works for British Eurosport & BBC Sport)
- Fabrice Santoro
- Samantha Smith (Also works for BBC Sport & BT Sport)
- Jeff Tarango (Also works for BBC Radio 5 Live)
Previous ITV Sport coverage
In 1985, ITV won the rights to show British Athletics from the BBC. As well as broadcasting UK athletics, the channel also showed many of the major European evening meetings whereby ITV showed the first hour with the second hour broadcast on Channel 4. ITV also broadcast the 1983 and 1987 World Championships and the European Athletics Championships during the 1980s and in 1990. Again, some of the coverage was broadcast on Channel 4. Jim Rosenthal presented the coverage with commentary from Alan Parry, Peter Matthews and Steve Ovett. ITV scaled back its coverage of the sport in the early 1990s and decided to axe all remaining athletics coverage in 1997 and the sport has subsequently never been seen on the channel. Channel 4 briefly took the baton from ITV, showing UK meetings in 1997 and 1998, before coverage reverted to the BBC in 1999.
The Boat Race
In 2004, ITV won the rights to the annual Varsity Boat Race from the BBC. The contract ran to 2009. Hosts of the coverage were initially Gabby Logan and Mark Durden Smith. Craig Doyle took over as presenter, while Peter Drury commentated. James Cracknell acted as a co presenter and pundit. ITV Sport did not renew its contract for The Boat Race after its contract ended due to wanting to concentrate on football and the rights reverted to the BBC.
TV Sport has broadcast many boxing matches over the years under the Big Fight Live banner and the sport was a regular fixture on ITV screens until the mid 1990s when ITV lost its two premier contracts - in mid-1994 Barry Hearn took Chris Eubank and his stable of fighters to Sky Sports and at the start of 1995, Sky Sports won the rights to show Sports Network fights,. This left ITV with only occasional boxing for the following ten years. Their only networked boxing during this period were a few fights involving Shea Neary, thanks to a contract with Merseyside promoter John Hyland. Other bouts were shown on ITV2 and the ill-fated ITV Sport Channel and some boxing was shown on a regional basis, but this was rare.
In May 2005, ITV returned to the ring with live coverage of Amir Khan's last fight before becoming professional against Mario Kindelan. It achieved a peak audience of 6.3 million viewers, encouraging ITV to reach a long-term agreement to broadcast the main share of Frank Warren's Sports Network fights and as a result broadcast fights involving Amir Khan, Joe Calzaghe, Danny Williams, Audley Harrison, Dereck Chisora and others. Other highlights included Joe Calzaghe's emphatic victory over Jeff Lacy for the WBO and IBF super-middleweight world title at the Manchester MEN Arena in March 2006. During this period the main event was usually shown on the ITV Network while undercard matches were often televised on ITV4.
On 6 September 2008, Amir Khan switched to Sky from ITV, signalling the end of ITV's contract with Frank Warren's Sports Network promotion. Later that month, ITV announced a 2-year, 26 fight deal with Hennessy Sports. The majority of fights were screened on ITV4 and was once again hosted by Jim Rosenthal, who made an unexpected return to ITV having previously been axed in early 2008. Amir Khan moved back to ITV in 2010, when his fight against Paulie Malignaggi was broadcast live in the early hours of Sunday 15 May 2010. ITV also broadcast delayed coverage of at least one Carl Froch fight in America the night after it took place. ITV then decided to stop covering the sport as ITV thought that boxing was no longer commercially viable.
The main host of ITV Boxing was Jim Rosenthal and until 1996 the main commentators were Reg Gutteridge and Jim Watt, both of whom moved to Sky while continuing to commentate for the few boxing shows ITV televised in the late 1990s, which were presented by Russ Williams. Graham Beecroft commentated on boxing on a regional basis during the late 1990s. When boxing returned to ITV on a regular basis in 2005 Jim Rosenthal resumed presenting duties and Barry McGuigan left Sky Sports to continue his role as a pundit on ITV. John Rawling and Duke McKenzie were the commentators and Gabriel Clarke provided reports and conducted interviews with the boxers.
Cricket has only been shown very occasionally on ITV. The BBC had been the major broadcaster of cricket during the 20th century until it lost all of its cricket coverage to Channel 4 in 1999. However, during the BBC's dominance of coverage of the sport ITV occasionally broadcast cricket on a regional basis, such as the Roses matches between Yorkshire and Lancashire which were shown in the north of England. ITV also showed highlights of England's overseas tour of New Zealand in 1988.
There was to be no further cricket on ITV until in 2010 the broadcaster signed a deal to show the 2010 Indian Premier League and encouraged by the success of having aired the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2010, on a one-year contract, UK broadcaster ITV has signed a new four-year deal with Nimbus Communications for the UK broadcast rights to the IPL. In February 2014 ITV lost coverage of the IPL from the 2015 season to Sky Sports. At this time ITV also covered the
Previously, ITV held the rights to English top flight football highlights (both in its current iteration as the Premier League and as the old Football League First Division). It acquired the Premiership highlights in 2000 for the 2001–02, 2002–03 and 2003–04 seasons, surprising the BBC, the previous holders, and ending Match of the Day as a weekly programme. The ITV programme was titled The Premiership and was presented by Des Lynam (himself formerly a presenter for Match of the Day), Matt Smith or Gabby Logan. The show originally went out at 7pm, but this ended up being unpopular with viewers and advertisers. As such, the show was moved to 10.30pm only a few months later. During this period, The Goal Rush was aired on Saturday during the football matches taking place on that day to provide live scores and match reports. It used a similar format to Gillette Soccer Saturday on Sky Sports but never achieved good ratings. The programme ended in 2003. ITV held the Premiership rights for one three-year contract - the rights returned to the BBC for the start of the 2004–05 season.
ITV shared the rights for the FA Cup with the BBC from 1955 to 1988 with both broadcasters covering the final live. This was generally the only UK match shown live on television every season. Both broadcasters started coverage from early morning trying to gain the upper hand on their rival. ITV regained the live rights to broadcast the FA Cup exclusively on terrestrial television in 1997, showing each final with Sky from 1998 to 2001 while the BBC screened highlights on Match of the Day. The FA Cup then reverted to the BBC until 2008 when ITV regained the FA Cup and England rights. ITV lost these rights from the end of the 2013–14 season to BBC Sport.
ITV covered Formula One from 1997 to 2008, after the BBC lost the rights. The deal, worth £60 million, offered extended pre and post race analysis and complete live coverage of qualifying, thanks to a deal negotiated with FOM's Bernie Ecclestone. ITV chose to bid for the rights due to constantly being beaten at weekends while the Grand Prix coverage was on.
ITV drew criticism for airing advertisement breaks during the races - they were obliged to take five three-minute commercial breaks during each race. In 2005 the network angered fans by running adverts during the tense conclusion to the San Marino Grand Prix. ITV repeated the last three laps after the race but were inundated with complaints from angry viewers. As a result of these complaints, the server on their website crashed and they were fined by regulator Ofcom. An on-air apology was made before the start of the next race in Spain two weeks later.
In March 2008, ITV announced that they had enacted a clause within their contract enabling them to leave F1 coverage after the 2008 season. It is believed this was done for commercial reasons and to allow more money to be spent on securing coverage of the UEFA Champions League. The BBC retained coverage from 2009 onwards.
Until the mid 1980s, horse racing was shown regularly on ITV. Racing was a mainstay of World of Sport throughout the programme's run with the ITV Seven featuring almost every week. ITV also showed racing during the week. ITV showed many of racing's showpiece events, including all the flat racing classics, although the channel never showed The Grand National as this event was covered by the BBC. In the mid 1980s coverage was switched to Channel 4. In March 1984, ITV's midweek action was moved with Saturday's racing coverage making the switch in September 1985, a few weeks before the final edition of World of Sport was broadcast. ITV continued to broadcast coverage of The Derby, simulcasting Channel 4's coverage, but stopped doing so after the 1988 event and this was the last time that horse racing was broadcast on ITV for more than 25 years.
Horse racing will return to ITV screens on 1 January 2017, taking over as the UK's broadcaster of the sport from Channel 4. Races that will be broadcast live include the Grand National, the Cheltenham Festival, the Epsom Derby, Royal Ascot and Glorious Goodwood.
ITV covered the summer Olympic Games 1968, 1972, 1980 and 1988. Costs associated with staff working overseas prevented coverage of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics but the Games returned to ITV screens for one last time in 1988, sharing the coverage with Channel 4 - Channel 4 showing the overnight and breakfast coverage with ITV covering the daytime action as well as broadcasting early evening highlights programmes.
Was shown as part of ITV's flagship sports programme World of Sport until the programme was cancelled in 1985. After that, wrestling was shown as a programme in its own right, moving to a lunchtime slot. This continued until 1988. Its many stars included Big Daddy and Giant Haystacks, and it received viewing figures of 8 million every week.
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