Connors to be Lead Wimbledon Analyst
LOS ANGELES — Tennis Channel, the only 24-hour, television-based multimedia destination dedicated to both the professional sport and tennis lifestyle, has signed tennis Hall of Famer Jimmy Connors to serve as a nightly analyst during the network’s upcoming Wimbledon coverage, June 21-30, 2010. The two-time Wimbledon winner will work with fellow legend Martina Navratilova and host Bill Macatee on the four-hour nightly tournament show Wimbledon Primetime, which begins Monday, June 21, at 7 p.m. ET.
Connors, who marked his debut on Tennis Channel during the network’s inaugural US Open coverage in 2009, also renewed his broadcast arrangement with the channel for that competition in late August.
“Martina, Bill and I had a great time on Tennis Channel during the US Open last summer,” said Connors. “It’s nice to have the opportunity to work with this team again at Wimbledon, and I look forward to reuniting with them in London in a few weeks.”
Shot on an English pub-styled set at the All-England Lawn Tennis Association, Tennis Channel’s Wimbledon Primetime offers news, interviews, the day’s best plays, original features, previously unseen matches and coverage from around the hallowed tournament grounds. The bulk of the program is dedicated to the most important on-court action of that particular afternoon, utilizing the BBC television coverage and commentary that is widely renowned within the tennis community. Macatee and Navratilova have hosted the program since its 2008 inception.
Tennis Channel will televise 40 hours of first-run Wimbledon Primetime for 10 nights at this year’s tournament, and another 40 hours of same-night, encore telecasts. The program will air each evening from 7 p.m.-11 p.m. ET, June 21-30. During the first week, June 21-27, the show’s encore presentation will immediately follow its first-run conclusion at 11 p.m. ET, and run through 3 a.m. ET. On June 28-30, Wimbledon Primetime’s encore presentation will air from 12 a.m.-4 a.m. ET.
Leading up to Wimbledon Primetime each evening, ESPN2 will provide live, day-long action each weekday (sharing coverage with ESPNU the first week), plus select highlights programs, for a total of more than 100 hours of coverage.
As with its inaugural US Open coverage in 2009, Tennis Channel will have the all-time men’s and women’s singles title holders on the same broadcast team in Connors and Navratilova, as they break down the on-court action and offer their respective insights to the 2010 crop of Wimbledon hopefuls.
In addition to its on-air coverage, Tennis Channel’s Web site, www.tennischannel.com, will enhance the network’s tournament offerings with columns from veteran tennis reporter Steve Flink and popular blogger James LaRosa, along with live scoring, polls, photo galleries and video highlights. Visitors will be able to view Wimbledon Primetime interviews and features, and take part in “Ask The Expert” Q&A sessions. The site will also offer access to Tennis Channel’s “London Calling” Wimbledon sweepstakes and the network’s free “Racquet Bracket” tournament prediction game.
Tennis Channel (tennischannel.com) is the only 24-hour, television-based multimedia destination dedicated to both the professional sport and tennis lifestyle. A hybrid of comprehensive sports, health, fitness, pop culture, entertainment, lifestyle and travel programming, the network is home to every aspect of the wide-ranging, worldwide tennis community. It also has the most concentrated single-sport coverage in television, with telecast rights to the US Open, Wimbledon, Roland Garros (French Open), Australian Open, Olympus US Open Series, ATP Masters Series, top-tier Sony Ericsson WTA Tour championship competitions, Davis Cup and Fed Cup by BNP Paribas, and Hyundai Hopman Cup. Tennis Channel is carried by nine of the top 10 MSOs, Verizon FiOS TV, and has a national footprint via DIRECTV and DISH Network.
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