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HomeSportsBCCI, Disney-Star at odds over Ind-SA series

BCCI, Disney-Star at odds over Ind-SA series

Disney-Star, the media rights holder for bilateral matches at home, and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) have been at loggerheads over the quantum of fees for the India-South Africa series, which was originally scheduled for 2020, but was held in 2022 due to the pandemic. According to the five-year media rights contract, signed in 2018, Disney Star agreed to pay 46.5 crore per match for all matches played in 2020, and 78.9 crore for 2022. Disney Star is of the view that it should pay 46.5 crore even in 2022 for the said series, given that technically it was from the third year of the 2018-23 cycle considering that matches were not played in 2020-21 following the outbreak of covid.

BCCI, however, has taken a contrarian stand. “As the South Africa series was played in 2022 the rights holder will have to pay as per the agreed amount for 2022. There is no question of a dispute,” said a BCCI official. An executive at Disney Star contended the board’s claims: “The third-year matches were postponed to year five. Besides, they (BCCI) hosted an additional match which was not even part of the contract. We are not asking for a discount but a fair price. The BCCI cannot suddenly increase the value of matches.”

A second official said that BCCI reserves the right to host or cancel a series that may not have been part of the contract, and the rights holder, in such cases, have to pay on a pro rata basis. Queries sent to Disney Star remained unanswered.

In 2018, BCCI had held the first ever e-auction for global consolidated rights for bilateral series in India for 2018-2023. Sony, and Reliance Jio had also bid for the rights.

According to the agreement on media rights, accessed by Mint, BCCI could charge Star 6,138 crore as per the MRA but asked the broadcaster to pay 6,277, a difference of 139 crore, as well as 79 crore for the extra match.

The additional match cost is not being contested by the broadcaster. However, this has resulted in a total cost escalation of 6%, said sources.

The rights were signed for a six-match white ball series against South Africa. The contract was to have six matches across 5 years and the series got pushed into its third year.

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