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US pay TV model emerges

SPORTS and Recreation Minister Norman Moore has urged sports fans to tell television stations they want soccer, cricket and basketball broadcasts to continue.

This summer, Channel Nine will not broadcast the Pura Milk Cup for the first time in 22 years.

And the ABC will not repeat it coverage of the National Soccer League.

Channel Seven, which owns the broadcast rights, has handed it to its pay TV arm C7.

These events – plus live NBL games involving the Perth Wildcats – will only be available through pay TV.

Mr Moore, who is writing to directors of local TV stations to encourage them to change their minds, said the move was fundamentally about ratings.

“But I can’t make them broadcast live coverage of sport if they have decided they are not going to,” Mr Moore said.

He was concerned about sports lovers in regional areas not being able to watch these sports on free-to-air TV.

“Country people have to rely on TV or radio to see or hear the games, whereas city people can actually go and watch the games when they are played in WA,” he said.

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