Ken Borland
Sports Journalist
3 minute read
16 Jan 2021
8:30 am

SA Rugby’s exclusivity rights: A court date beckons for Icasa if they continue with this idiocy

Ken Borland

Rugby is in the canoe going over the Victoria Falls if they can no longer sell their rights as a single package, in long-term, exclusive contracts.

SA Rugby CEO Jurie Roux told the hearing the money the organisation needs to build a proper well-functioning structure largely comes from the sale of television broadcast rights and sponsors who are willing to pay for the exposure they get on TV. Picture: Getty Images

Watching South African rugby on television at the moment may be a bit like being in a canoe stuck in a stagnant backwater – the still water means not much is happening – but there is a deadly waterfall up ahead if the Independent Communications Authority (Icasa) get their way. Icasa, which regulates broadcasting in this country, are concerned that subscription TV, i.e. Multichoice, have a monopoly on showing live sport in this country and they want to make the market more competitive. To do this, they propose that broadcast rights can only be bought for a maximum three-year period,...