GENEVA (2010 FIBA World Championship) - FIBA announced today that the upcoming basketball World Championship in Turkey will be broadcast in 183 countries, a record number for the tournament.
The 80-game competition, which begins this Saturday, will be shown across the world to an audience of more than one billion on terrestrial, satellite and subscription channels.
Major broadcasters transmitting the action include ESPN, Fox, Al Jazeera Sport, CCTV, NTV Turkey, Canal+, Viasat, La Sexta and Supersport, which will broadcast 38 free-to-air games in Africa for the first time. FIBA also today announced a deal with the cable and satellite channel Ten Sports to bring the tournament to the Indian sub-continent for the first time.
Patrick Baumann, Secretary-General of FIBA, said: "We are delighted that so many countries are taking coverage from the tournament and that the action will be watched across all five continents.
"This level of interest is testament to the global popularity of our game and marks a new landmark in its growth and development. We have agreed deals with a mixture of free-to-air and pay-per-view channels and we believe the coverage will reach more than one billion people.
"We are also very excited about bringing the tournament to countries where basketball is not regarded as a traditional sport as part of our mission to bring the excitement of our game to new audiences."
A total of 132 countries took coverage from the last World Championship in Japan in 2006. However, FIBA has been able to agree a further 51 partnerships, including countries which have not taken footage before, such as India and the UK. Canada is also covering the event for the first time since it hosted the 1994 FIBA World Championship.
Paul Stimpson, Head of TV and New Media at FIBA, said: "The reach and production quality of our broadcasting are unprecedented in the history of the FIBA World Championship.
"For the first time, FIBA is responsible for providing the Host Broadcast and all 80 games will be produced in HD complete with an English language commentary. This service, together with every game being streamed live on FIBAtv.com, gives basketball fans all over the world the chance to experience and enjoy the very best of the action."
The 2010 FIBA World Championship will be the world's biggest-ever basketball competition and feature superstars such as Kevin Durant, Marc Gasol and Jianlin Yi.
Around 350,000 people are expected to attend the event in Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir and Kayseri from August 28 to September 12.
The tournament will feature 24 teams, including reigning world champions Spain and 2008 Olympic gold medalists USA, with 288 players competing. Two new venues have been built especially for the finals.
The team winning the 2010 FIBA World Championship will qualify automatically for the London 2012 Olympics.
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