Dave, the UKTV-owned channel, has agreed a deal to air David Haye’s comeback fight against Australia’s Mark de Mori from London’s O2 Arena on January 16th.
The deal also includes a half-hour preview show the night before the fight exploring why Haye is returning to the ring after a three-and-a-half-year absence.
“We are increasingly stretching our offering to Dave viewers, bringing them programmes which tap into the news agenda, such as last year’s election special The Pub Landlord vs Nigel Farage,” said Steve North, general manager at Dave.
Haye said he was keen for the fight to be shown on free-to-air television. “I’m delighted that my first fight in three-and-a-half years is going to be available free to air on Dave giving as many people as possible the chance to watch my comeback,” he commented. “I was determined to make this comeback fight free to everybody.”
UKTV-owned Dave, which uses the strapline “the home of witty banter”, airs shows including re-runs of Eight Out of 10 Cats, Top Gear, Mock the Week and QI, while it also features US programmes such as Storage Hunters and Lizard Lick Towing.
Dave isn’t completely new to sports broadcasting. In the past, the channel has aired non-exclusive coverage of World Cup football and Six Nations rugby, and it also holds the broadcast rights to Red Bull’s extreme sports programming.