Tennis: Thoughts on Nine unexpectedly cutting off its Roland Garros coverage a few hours earlier than originally planned lately following wet weather delays last week

by Sports Benches

As we all know that Nine and also its subsidiary paid streaming partner Stan Sport is currently your home of Grand Slam Tennis in Australia showing all four tournaments throughout the year. Don’t get me wrong, the coverage has always been great when they first decided to switch over from cricket back in late 2018 that worked really well as they will continue to get better in the years ahead after successfully renewing the Australian Open rights for another five years until 2029.

But what viewers noticed that some days when most of the Roland Garros were held up by wet weather & even so when the whole day’s play went back to normal, it seems the free-to-air telecasts have unexpectedly finished a few hours early rather than approx. 4.30am as originally scheduled. Although they would be happy to stick around a bit longer now, especially when something interesting happens where one will go on until the match is over but then they would rather leave right away to return to normal programming. We also didn’t know that Brett Phillips was there after all during some of the overnight action last week but not very often before the bad weather changed everything despite not being named on Nine’s press releases.

Given the lack of interest amongst Aussie sports and tennis fans here when most of the world’s top stars regularly do so well other than Alex De Minaur, it seems they would go with covering just 1-2 early matches including the knockout singles ties except the all-important Finals for the whole length rather than showing all of them going into the early morning hours like they did in the last few years. I guess when the US Open comes around later this year even without Brett is that maybe they should show some early matches only involving an Aussie live and then have all the night sessions ready during the morning with their own broadcast team rather than miss the early sessions altogether if that’s the way to keep airing this from here.

It would’ve also been better if they put some on 9Go for the overnight action and just take the whole world feed’s coverage when it comes to the early round matches & then do the same for 9Gem during the later knockout ties. Last year’s Davis Cup Finals isn’t the first time we saw without the network’s own broadcast commentary by relaying the world feed. But unfortunately, that won’t work that much either & that’s probably where they’re going given Nine isn’t throwing away all the other grand slams anytime soon thanks to Stan Sport, who continues to showcase all of the grand slams uninterrupted and also ad-free with a whole lot of on-demand viewing like replays, etc. so at least they can get most of the money back.

We all love watching the Australian Open every year with Wimbledon being another big sporting event going into next month since it’s been popular amongst the free-to-air flavour for so long. But what about Roland Garros and US Open? Not so much during a very different time of the year that isn’t January when most other people are busy watching Footy at the same time.

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