Ash Barty snubbed by Seven
Ash Barty, Australia’s first number 1 ranked female player since Evonne Goolagong, opened her Wimbledon account with a straight-sets victory over Zheng Saisai.
Too bad most of the country couldn’t watch it.
Instead, Channel 7 decided to show Nick Kyrgios’ match against fellow Aussie Jordan Thompson, leaving the reigning French Open champ’s opening match watchable to Foxtel subscribers only.
Seven’s rights agreement with Wimbledon permits them to show only one match at a time, and the broadcaster decided to go the distance with Kyrgios after his match extended to five sets.
Disappointed views took to social media to express their dismay at the snub while questioning the network’s judgement.
— Neil McMahon (@NeilMcMahon) July 2, 2019
Genuine question: Why is Channel 7 (7Two) broadcasting Nick Kyrgios – the world’s Number Whatever male player – when at the very same time Ash Barty – the world Number 1 female player – also an Australian – is playing? Seven, there is something seriously wrong with your judgment.
— John Lyons (@TheLyonsDen) July 2, 2019
Channel 7 attempted to explain the rationale behind the decision not to show Ash Barty’s match on Sunrise.
“So Nick Kyrgios’ match started at 11pm, so 1am is when Ash’s match actually starts, but Nick Kyrgios and Jordan Thompson are slugging it out over five sets,” Sunrise sports reporter Mark Beretta said.
“They run long. People have been watching for two hours and at the climax of the match, we’re gonna say ‘let’s go to Ash now’ That’s the difficult decision,
“So what we did, we showed a bit of Ash… and we flicked between the two matches until Nick was done and then we went with Ash. That’s how it unfolded. And the nature of our arrangement with Wimbledon is that we can only show one match on one channel at any one time, so it was not an option to show it on two channels,
“It’s like watching a movie for two hours and then just before the finish you change it.”