The opening tee shot of The Open will be shown live for the first time as part of Sky Sports’ round-the-clock coverage of golf’s pre-eminent Major. Sky agreed a five-year deal to take over live coverage of the tournament from the BBC starting in 2017, but the BBC withdrew from its coverage deal a year early.
Sky Sports will dedicate an entire channel to the Championship, offering ten days of programming including live coverage of all four days’ play and practice rounds, evening highlights of each day’s play plus a host of documentaries and shows exploring the unique allure of The Open.
The channel launches on 11 July, when Sky Sports 1 becomes ‘Sky Sports The Open’. Sky’s live coverage of The 145th Open at Royal Troon will begin on 14 July ahead of the opening tee shot at 6.35am which will be shown live for the first time on television in the UK and Ireland. The Championship continues until 17 July.
Sky Sports Managing Director, Barney Francis, said: “The Open is the pre-eminent golf Major and Sky Sports will offer the Championship the coverage it deserves. With a dedicated channel, we will offer viewers the complete story live from Royal Troon, from the opening tee shot to the final putt. We’re excited and honoured to be covering the event and can’t wait for it to begin.”
Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, said: “The Open is a true celebration of world-class sport. We are delighted with the comprehensive and innovative coverage that Sky Sports will deliver from the build-up to the Championship at Royal Troon through to the crowning of the Champion Golfer of the Year.”
“The Open holds a special place in the hearts of sports fans who appreciate the unrelenting challenge that is presented to the world’s best players and we know that Sky Sports will broadcast the Championship with great insight and expertise.”
On the same day that ‘Sky Sports The Open’ launches, Sky Sports’ channel numbers will change with Sky Sports News HQ moving to Sky electronic programme guide (EPG) number 406, with Sky Sports 1 becoming 401.