Television

USTA's new deal with CBS for US Open

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NEW YORK: The United States Tennis Association (USTA) and CBS Sports have announced a landmark broadcast television partnership that includes an extension of CBS Sports' America rights to the US Open through 2006. In addition the USTA has an option to extend the deal for an additional two years (2007-2008).

 

In India the event airs every August on Star Sports. The partnership includes live coverage on select weekends of the proposed US Open Series. This is a series of summer professional tennis events that will lead into the final Grand Slam of the year. The Series is tentatively scheduled to launch with select tournaments next year, with expansion planned in 2005. Overall, the new deal provides for over 60 hours of programming devoted to the US Open, other summer tournaments, and special USTA programming each year.



The broad-reaching deal also includes increased on-air support of the US Open and the sport of tennis, during the months leading up to and including the US Open. The new deal includes 48 hours of US Open television coverage each year, including six days of coverage over two weekends; the continuation of the primetime Women's Singles Final; a late-night highlights show. In addition there will also be a telecast of Arthur Ashe Kids' Day; a US Open preview show leading into the tournament; and four episodes of Topspin.



This is the USTA's youth-targeted tennis television program to be aired on Saturdays during the summer months. As of now the US Open's schedule remains similar to recent years. An official release informs that last year USA Network signed a six-year agreement for cable broadcast rights for the US Open, for weekday coverage of the event. CBS' partnership with the US Open stretches for 35 years.



USTA professional tennis chief executive Arlen Kantarian added, "We consider our CBS partnership to be one of the strongest in sports. We continue to create innovative television concepts to grow the game - - from the Women's Prime Time Final to the proposed US Open Series. This new deal sets the stage for a consistent television viewing platform for tennis throughout the summer. We look forward to continuing our discussions with the WTA, the ATP and tournament owners to now make this concept a reality."

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