Rugby commercial breakdown

TV3Further to Shane Hegarty on his blog raising the issue of TV3’s coverage of the Rugby World Cup, it is fearful that Ireland’s commercial broadcaster has bitten off more than they can chew regarding France 2007. Initially, the reaction was positive if a little surprised at the result. Setanta would show all 48 games and TV3 would show a handful on terrestrial. The lads in Ballymount Industrial Estate whooped at the fact that they grabbed the rights from those old fogies in Donnybrook and my, were they gonna celebrate. Whatever they usually give those guys at TV3 sport before they go on air, they doubled the dose prior to September 7.

“TV3 is the only official broadcaster of the Rugby World Cup. The ONLY place you can see all Ireland games LIVE”

My God, the presenter would be in palpitations at this stage! THEN, we here the truth. Of the 48 games of the RWC, “the only official broadcaster” would show the first game, all Ireland’s games, one Quarter-Final, both semi-finals and the final. Yawn! That’s nothing. It’s hardly worth Matt Cooper leaving his Last Word seat for. And don’t get me started on hauling Trevor Brennan from his relaxed life in the south of France to go the shed in Ballymount Industrial Estate. Trevor bocht!

Only two games in and TV3 is coming in for criticism. We miss the Hook and Pope show. In fact, it may have gone some way to Ireland’s poor performance. This is not to take away from any analytical prowess the TV3 crew might have, but they simply have not got the time. Straight after the Ireland game on Sunday, the audience was treated to 5 minutes of ads followed by 4 minutes of analysis followed by 5 minutes of ads. Half-time analysis could only be described as shocking. I’m not even sure they analysed all the tries.

On the case is one Tom McGurk; presenter of RTÉ’s coverage and the go-between for the Hook and Pope show. Invited onto Gerry Ryan’s 2FM show to talk about the Namibia result, McGurk launched a scathing attack on the commercial rivals.

“Well first of all they lost Hook and Pope. The guys in the Rugby Union [IRB] insisted on selling the rights to some guys in a garage off the Burlington Road, who are presenting like they’re in a garage off Burlington Road.”

Matt CooperDon’t cross McGurk! He went on to criticise the new Irish strip, using ‘Paul O’Connell‘ and ‘panties’ in the same breath. Ouch! Someone get a saucer of milk! Tom seems a little aggrieved that Hook, thanks to NewsTalk, still gets to go to the games in France, while Popey still works for RTÉ online. The national broadcaster decided that a fill-in for Pat Kenny over the summer months would tie Tom over and keep him happy. How wrong they were!

For TV3, let’s hope that Friday and Sunday has ironed out the teething problems. (Cooper mistook Argentine scrum-half Pichot and called him ‘Pinochet‘) But something tells me TV3 will live up to its status as the ‘commercial’ broadcaster.

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~ by waffler on September 11, 2007.

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