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Rugby League signs $A1b TV deal

NZ Newswire Updated August 21, 2012, 12:15 pm

Australian Rugby League Commission chairman John Grant has hailed the new five-year broadcast deal, which is worth more than $A1 billion, as "the greatest deal ever done" by the sport.

Incumbent broadcasters the Nine Network and Fox Sports have retained the TV rights.

Under the new agreement, Nine will retain all representative games and three free-to-air NRL matches each weekend.

Fox Sports will continue with five games, including Monday night football.

"Today we answer the $A1 billion question with the $A1 billion-plus answer," Grant said on Tuesday.

The $A1.025 billion deal is worth $A925 million in cash, with the balance to be made up in advertising.

"We're still to sell our NZ TV rights and yet to monetise mobile platforms," said Grant.

"This is a fantastic outcome for the game and starts the journey the Commission was formed to oversee.

"The cash that comes from the agreement, used wisely, will provide a funding base to sustainably grow our game from its grassroots to the elite levels."

"We hope the game's stakeholders see this agreement as a confirmation of their decision to put in place an Independent Commission, and one that unlocks the promise that came from this formation.

"It's been a difficult, complex and, at times, stressful process.

"Everyone in the sport can feel a great sense of pride, where fans of the highest-rating code in the country can look forward to seeing great matches week in and week out."

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