Demonstrating the BBC’s ongoing commitment to Rugby League, the new deal now cements BBC Sport as the terrestrial home of England international action from Rugby League World Cup 2013 and onwards.
Barbara Slater, Director of BBC Sport, says: “It’s very exciting to cap our Rugby League portfolio with the top international tournaments, enabling us to offer audiences the pinnacle events of the sport each year. These add to our already comprehensive coverage, which gives the full narrative of the season. This is a great opportunity to bring Rugby League to a wide audience and showcase the best players in the world through the BBC’s multi-platform coverage. Continue reading »
Bradley Wiggins did wonders for the sport of cycling in the UK last year but this year he’s pushing a new sport: rugby league.
The Tour de France winner and Olympic champion features in the new Sky Sport promo for Super League XVIII where he describes the sport of rugby league as being far tougher than cycling.
In the promo, Wiggins is chased through the mountains of Mallorca by a hooded figure who turns out to be Wigan Warriors player Sam Tomkins. Continue reading »
4:50pm Sunday 11 November on BBC TWO
Mark Chapman is at Salford City Stadium for live coverage of the autumn internationals final.
England, Wales and France were the sides competing for a place in the final of the competition that offers them a chance to prepare for next year’s World Cup.
2:15pm Saturday 3 November on BBC ONE
Mark Chapman hosts live coverage of the third match in the Autumn International Series, in which England take on France at Craven Park, Hull.
This battle between Europe’s top two international rugby league teams should be an enthralling encounter. England will be favourites, but are playing their first tournament without talismanic former captain Jamie Peacock, who has retired from the international game.
Steve McNamara’s side will also have to cope without the likes of injured Warrington forward Ben Westwood, and influential prop James Graham – so the pack will need to impress against a physical French outfit who will call on a number of stars from Catalan Dragons – who reached the Super League play-offs this season.
5:00pm Sunday 7 October on BBC TWO
Clare Balding introduces highlights of the 16th Grand Final, with studio guest Brian Noble on hand to offer expert analysis.
Leeds Rhinos secured their fourth Grand Final victory in the last five years with a 32-16 triumph over St Helens 12 months ago. The mercurial Rob Burrow was at his elusive best as he became just the second man to win two Harry Sunderland awards following his man-of-the-match display. Who will be celebrating at Old Trafford this year as the domestic rugby league season reaches its climax?
Commentary from Dave Woods and Jonathan Davies.
5:15pm Sunday 15 July on BBC TWO
Clare Balding is at the City of Salford Community Stadium to present live coverage of the weekend’s second Challenge Cup semi-final, as Huddersfield take on Warrington.
The game is a re-run of the 2009 final when the Wolves ran out 25-16 winners against the Giants. Warrington are looking to seal a third trip to Wembley in four seasons, having successfully defended the trophy in 2010.
Victory for Huddersfield would leave them one win away from clinching their first Challenge Cup since 1953.
Commentary comes from Ray French and Jonathan Davies.
5:15pm Saturday 14 July on BBC TWO
Clare Balding presents live coverage from the Galpharm Stadium as Leeds Rhinos take on Wigan Warriors in the first semi-final of this year’s Challenge Cup.
With a place at Wembley at stake, Leeds will be looking to gain revenge for their 28-18 defeat by Wigan in last year’s final.
Warriors will be in a confident mood after their convincing quarter-final victory over St Helens, while the Rhinos are guaranteed a tougher assignment than they faced in the last eight when they beat Leigh 60-12.
Commentary comes from Dave Woods and Jonathan Davies.
2:00pm Saturday 29 October on BBC ONE
Clare Balding is at the Leigh Sports Village as England meet debutants Wales on the opening weekend of the Four Nations tournament
4:30pm Sunday 9 October on BBC TWO
Clare Balding introduces highlights of the Super League Grand Final from Old Trafford
The BBC will bring live coverage of the 2011 Challenge Cup Final on TV, HD, radio, online and red button, as Leeds Rhinos take on Wigan Warriors at Wembley Stadium on Saturday 27 August.
Both teams have had a long wait for this prized piece of silverware in what is Rugby League’s oldest and most prestigious knockout competition, with Wigan not having won the cup since 2002 and Leeds not since 1999.
Clare Balding presents the TV coverage with Jonathan Davies, Brian Noble and Justin Morgan, with match commentary from Dave Woods and John Kear. The pitch-side reporting team are Tanya Arnold and Damien Johnson, with Robbie Hunter-Paul.
Coverage is live on BBC One and BBC One HD, 2.15-5.10pm, and the match will also be live streamed on BBC Sport online and on the BBC Red Button.
In addition, the TV team bring red button viewers a pre-match warm up programme from 1.30-2.15pm. This 45-minute preview will feature predictions, the latest news and features with both Wigan and Leeds.
As well as streaming the Challenge Cup Final live, BBC Sport online will offer live text commentary, reports, reaction and a blog. Plus there will be highlights available 24 hours after final whistle.
BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra will feature live commentary of the match from David Oates and Stuart Pyke at Wembley, 2.15-4.15pm, with Ian Millward as summariser.
Fridays night’s 5 Live Sport includes a Challenge Cup preview (7-9.30pm) and 5 Live Weekend Breakfast (6-9am) on Saturday 27 August will have special guests and all the Challenge Cup build-up.