04 February, 2011

World Title Fight: Mayor of Limerick angered at RTÉ's refusal to televise Rigondeaux v 'Big Bang' Casey

Follow hoogenband0110 on Twitter
TV Blackout:  'Big Bang'
Outspoken Mayor of Limerick, Cllr Maria Byrne, has expressed her great annoyance at RTÉ’s decision not to screen Willie ‘Big Bang’ Casey’s WBA Super Bantamweight world title fight at the Citywest Event Centre in Dublin in March.
RTÉ Sport have confirmed to the ‘Limerick Leader’ that they will not be carrying the fight between the Southill man and Cuban world champion, Guillermo Rigondeaux, due to the “financial climate”.
“I am astounded that RTÉ has decided not to show what is set to be one of the greatest bouts ever to take place in Ireland, with Willie Casey up against a former Olympic medallist and World Boxing Association champion,” said an angry Mayor Byrne.
“The fact that the title bout will take place in Citywest in Dublin, just a stone’s throw from RTÉ makes the decision even more unbelievable. I am calling on RTÉ to reverse its decision and to show the fight live,” she added.
RTÉ Head of Sport: Title blackout is sign of times
Ryle Nugent, Group Head, RTÉ Sport, told the ‘ Limerick Leader’ : “The costs associated with producing and broadcasting this event are prohibitive. The financial climate and our finances do not allow”.
He added: “In the context of a deficit for 2010 which will be reported in the 2010 RTÉ annual report; followed by a further €15 million hit from the government budget in December – RTÉ Sport is currently not in a position to consider any sports events not already contracted for the year”.
Speaking at the fight’s launch in Thomond Park this week, Willie Casey’s promoter and manager , Don O’Leary said it was a “shame that it will not be shown by our national broadcaster”.
“RTÉ are not covering the event. We have been on to TV3 and Setanta and while there would be a willingness on their parts to show the fight, they can’t come up with the money to broadcast it,” said O’Leary.
“We are talking to Sky and Eurosport. The fight will be shown, but it is a shame that it will not be shown by our national broadcaster. We want the people of Ireland to see the contest. We are very, very disappointed,” he added.
Title Fight could yet go to satellite T.V.
It is thought likely that the cost factor of employing an outside broadcast unit, plus existing boxing deals RTÉ have in place, would have made it difficult for the broadcaster to screen the fight, which ESPN have the US and worldwide rights to, the’ Leader’ understands.
Promoters Dolphil Promotions and Nowhere2Hyde say that close to 3,000 of the 4,200 seats for the bout,  (which will take place the same day as the Ireland – England Six Nations match in the Aviva Stadium) , have been sold.
Cork born Gary Hyde, who manages Rigondeaux, also expressed his disappointment at RTÉ’s decision.
“The Irish broadcasters are saying they cannot afford to show the bout,” said Hyde.
“It will be shown in Northern, Central and Southern America”.
Irish boxing fans, seeking a ticket for the fight are urged to make early contact with www.ticketgroup.ie with tickets ranging from €30 – €150
Follow hoogenband0110 on Twitter

No comments:

Post a Comment