Originally Posted by four_or_six
Yeah, they're a lot worse. But the ECB would never have made such a U-turn. Their attempts to get some live cricket onto free-to-air TV failed last year when the BBC didn't make a bid for anything at all. I'm not sure how the government can do this, I thought Sky's contract lasted until 2013, which is the next Ashes, but perhaps it's earlier in the year.
Personally, I think it's a lot more important to get a decent length and quality highlights package onto the BBC than any live cricket. It's pretty hard to get the time to watch home test cricket, but it would be good to have highlights at a time in the evening when kids can be watching.
Edit: The BBC has updated their article. It now says this would start in 2017.
I think the figures for the current highlights on Five show that they don't really work as far as stimulating interest goes. I certainly didn't get interested in cricket by watching highlights anyway. Live sport has always been where it's at for me, although that might be a personal thing.
You could say that the sub-standard coverage is affecting the viewing figures, but the thought of Nicholas and Boycott commentating never stopped anyone from tuning in when it was all on Channel 4.
Now what we have to wonder is how much the landscape will have changed by the time this comes into effect. It's eight years away, it might have gotten to the stage where it makes no difference.