Great news for international rugby fans! Sky secures multi-year deal for the Heineken Champions Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup - Sky
• Heineken Champions Cup: 63 matches broadcast live across the season on Sky Sport
• “Match of week” Friday UK 20.00 UK time for a Saturday breakfast match in Aotearoa New Zealand
• Expansion to 24 teams including South Africa. Revered franchises DHL Stormers, Vodacom Bulls, Emirates Lions and C-Cell Sharks join the competition
• Shortened pool stage (four weekends) and an expanded knock out stage (four weekends) as per last season
• EPCR Challenge Cup: one quarter final, one semi-final and the final on Sky Sport
• EPCR Challenge Cup knock out stage will see the four Heineken Champions Cup teams that don’t qualify to the Heineken Champions Cup Round of 16, move into the Challenge Cup Round of 16.
The club names are legendary, and they are often home to Kiwi talent, so Sky New Zealand is proud to confirm rugby fans can continue to enjoy their beloved game, pretty much year round. The Heineken Champions Cup and selected matches from the EPCR Challenge Cup, plus highlights and exclusive interviews and content will be on Sky Sport for years to come.
Adam Crothers, Sky’s Head of Sport Partnerships says, “This deal is a great one for Sky’s customers, securing the best of top-tier European club rugby with the Heineken Champions Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup for years to come. The Heineken Champions Cup starts this weekend and runs through our summer months, adding to the year-round feast of rugby for Sky customers.
“Our focus is always on ensuring we have the sport content that fans love, and that we deliver it on platforms that work for them. We're looking forward to the coming kiwi summer where our customers can enjoy the workrate from the Harlequins, Leinster, Ospreys, Racing 92, ASM Clermont Auvergne and more.”
EPCR’s Commercial and Marketing Director François Vergnol added: “New Zealand is a huge rugby nation and we are proud to be working with Sky Sport to bring the Heineken Champions Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup to rugby fans across the country. Adding Sky Sport to our broadcast partner family gives New Zealand rugby fans the perfect opportunity to watch breakfast rugby throughout the summer.”
The Heineken Champions Cup kicks off Friday December 9 20:00 UK time with London Irish v Montpellier Hérault, while the EPCR Challenge Cup gets underway at the same time with Stade Français Paris v Benetton Rugby. Many of the stars of the teams are fresh out of high-paced internationals and are already turning their attention to big club rivalries. The action will stream live on Sky Sport Now and is available on multiple channels on Sky Sport and Sky Go, with four matches per round and a match of the week timed perfectly for viewing over bacon and eggs or a green goddess bowl on a Saturday morning in NZ.