Tennis on tap

Published May 29, 2014

When we signed up for BT Sport, I figured it would be one of those things that would be exciting for a week or so, and then eventually become a forgotten about channel – or in this case, set of channels. I couldn’t have been more wrong. We’ve watched endless hours of content from the telecommunications broadcaster, and although not all of it appeals (ultimate fighting is not my cup of tea, and the wrongly named Sportshub that only focuses on football just grates), I’d reckon we’re getting good value for money.

The majority of our BT Sport watching is made up of the various WTA tournaments. BT Sport have the rights to show an awful lot of women’s tennis, and so far this year, we’ve been watching as much of it as we can. It’s often on in the background, low volume, just there in the corner of the room, and somehow, we have become far more knowledgeable as a result.

Roland Garros

The French Open at Roland Garros is currently underway, and it’s been an absolute blast this week tuning into matches and knowing who quite a lot of the players are, and what their previous form has been like. I’ve been a tennis fan for as long as I can remember, but up till now I never really had the time to search out what tournaments were on and where I could watch them. In the end, I would settle for Wimbledon watching once a year, with only a vague idea of the most famous stars. With BT Sport delivering such comprehensive coverage, it’s actually harder to try and avoid it!

The only downside is that so far, their rights extend mostly to the WTA. Watching the men’s matches from Paris has been an odd experience, a lot faster, and with fewer recognisable names and faces. Today it was confirmed that BT Sport have picked up rights to share the pre-Wimbledon matches – Queens, etc – with the BBC and they’ll have both men’s and women’s matches. With that in mind, we might go into the famous grass tournament with more of a clue.

Either way, it’s been brilliant having so much tennis available at the touch of a button. If it’s a cracking match, it can be distracting, but for the most part, it’s a lovely sport to have on in the background, dipping in and out when you want to, or when it gets interesting. I’m concerned that as the broadcaster grows, they’ll get more sports and less time to show as much WTA as they’re showing now, but that’s a problem for the future. For now, I’m just enjoying all the double faults and aces, deuce games and tie breaks that I can.

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