Australia Cricket News with the unveil of Channel 7 cricket crew for 2020-21

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Channel 7 have unveiled their 2020/21 cricket coverage. Despite the fact they have a legal battle v Cricket Australia.

Their style of having a ball by ball Caller & two analysts does not go anywhere. And does the traditional lip microphones.

Tim Lane, Alison Mitchell & James Brayshaw stays on for year 3. There is a list of analysts that will follow them too:

  • Michael Slater
  • Ricky Ponting
  • Damien Fleming
  • Simon Katich
  • Greg Blewett (Adelaide Test only)
  • Trent Copeland

So there is no mention about Glenn McGrath returning there. I am not sure if charity work keeps him busy. Otherwise, he may be a victim of 7’s budget cuts.

Bruce McAvaney may not be there for the Melbourne & Sydney tests. He has covered there on occasions before.

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Bruce is one kind of a sporting doyen in broadcasting. But he did not commentate cricket at all & covered the tennis instead.

There will be an international analyst as always to provide opposition insight. And it is not Aakash Chopra from season one.

I think Aakash is unavailable due to quarantine or some other contract. So Sunil Gavaskar takes his place. We hear him for years via the India home coverage.

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Sunny was a great batsman back in his day. T20 may not be around at the time. But he proved a dynamite to the bowlers as the opening batsman.

So does an umpire for the first time in Simon Taufel. Even Simon brings with little pro playing experience. But he officiated Club/International games for decades.

The first I have heard when a past coach did commentary. Just look at Mike Hesson over at Sky Sport in New Zealand.

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And there is no change with the host of James Brayshaw & Mel McLaughlin. It seems to be there is a lot less analysts.

We know their off field situation which is ongoing right now. I guess 7 will switch to two personnel. So they have one analyst & one play by play caller each in the booth.

Big Bash League

But I do not think they will ditch the three person commentary. Most of the analysts remain unchanged between Test & BBL.

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There is a few additional ones around specially for this T20 league at home:

  • Brad Hodge
  • Lisa Sthalekar
  • Brad Hodge
  • Jason Richardson (Caller)
  • Andy Maher (Caller)
  • Alister Nicholson (Caller)
  • Abbey Gelmi (Host)
  • Erin Holland (Host)

They are also having an international expert on the ground. Year one was Phil Tufnell. Brendon McCullum did it last year with his test duties in the NZ tour here.

Now 7 is bringing Brian Lara to the fold for BBL10. Brian did not play T20 Internationals back in his day like Sunny.

But he used to be an unbelievable hitter downtown as well. Brian is perfect to use his brains about modern day batting. And show how to use movement v the bowler.

I also do not see 7 borrowing some Fox Cricket crew for the men’s BBL comp. I know they used them a while ago. That was the Women’s BBL that just finished.

But I think they are all sorted to get through this cricket season. At least live on the airwaves & on the green field.

Uncertainty

We will wait and see if Seven wants to cut this contract out. There is no secret that cricket is one of the popular sports here.

Their only enemies to bat against is Cricket Australia. And now the Board Cricket Cricket of India organisation.

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Seven is not happy with the international leg began only on Fox Cricket. I know the viewership there has worked well. But they are still unhappy to see that happen.

The original Intetnational schedule would still start by Fox. But Seven did not complain. That is because the T20 World Cup supposed to take place. Channel 9 holds the rights for that tournament.

Then the T20 World Cup became preempted to 2022. So Fox have the box seat for the popular Virat Kohli show.

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And Seven will only receive his drawcard for the Adelaide Test opener. He will fly home afterwards for the baby. So that is going to make Seven lose its value.

It is not just the Kohli less show promos that forced them to pay the price. And get to post losses in return. It is also the scheduling they are not impressed.

Airing BBL with no star names while/before the Internationals are worthless. 7 first noticed this issue back in August.

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Now I hear Seven wants the National Rugby League in 2023. That is good for them. CEO James Warburton gets along well with this code. And I am sure he will push hard to prize NRL off Channel 9.

But they do not have the maximum funds right now. So Seven needs to go through CA & BCCI first to rip up that contract.

It will go down in a long way as there is no legal right to do. We can only find out what the judges say on this situation.

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