RTE Sport today announced details of its 2011 Rugby World Cup campaign, which will include all of Ireland’s games broadcast live from New Zealand as part of 130 hours of rugby coverage across the station’s television, radio and online platforms.
At the launch today, 2003 World Cup winner Ben Kay, Ireland’s Shane Horgan and Leinster head coach Joe Schmidt were announced as part of RTÉ’s team of panellists for the 2011 World Cup.
Also joining the team this autumn for the first time will be former Leinster defence coach and Ireland international Kurt McQuilkin, who will be co-commentating for radio from his native New Zealand.
Ryle Nugent, RTÉ Group Head of Sport, said: “RTÉ is committed to bringing the best of international and national sporting events to the Irish public free-to-air.
“Fans can look forward to following the Irish team’s progression every step of the way on all of RTÉ’s platforms with the unique perspective and expert analysis that our panel bring, which is unrivalled by any other broadcaster.
“We look forward to sharing what is set to be a momentous sporting occasion with the Irish public.”
On securing the broadcast rights, Mike Miller, Rugby World Cup Limited (RWCL) Managing Director, paid tribute to RTÉ’s quality coverage by saying: “RWCL is delighted to be extending its association with RTÉ Sport to broadcast the 2011 Rugby World Cup throughout Ireland.
“RTÉ is recognised as a leading broadcaster of quality sports coverage and a true champion of rugby in Ireland and we are looking forward to working in partnership with RTÉ to further the promotion of the Rugby World Cup.”
RTÉ Television will broadcast all the top games with 13 key matches live and free-to-air, including all of Ireland’s pool matches, the final, the bronze final, both semi-finals, all four quarter-finals and the opening match.
For the first time ever, coverage of the Rugby World Cup will be broadcast in HD in Ireland as RTÉ Television’s live coverage of 13 key games is also available on RTÉ Two HD on SAORVIEW.
In addition to the live games, RTÉ Television will broadcast free-to-air highlights coverage of every game in the tournament shown exclusively in primetime (6pm-9pm) on RTÉ Two each matchday.
RTÉ’s team of rugby presenters, analysts and commentators will be on hand throughout the tournament with Ben Kay, Shane Horgan and Joe Schmidt joining regulars George Hook, Brent Pope, Conor O’Shea, Victor Costello and Frankie Sheahan for their analysis of all the action.
Tom McGurk and Daire O’Brien will anchor proceedings, while Hugh Cahill, Ryle Nugent, Donal Lenihan, George Hamilton, Tony Ward, Ralph Keyes and Kurt McQuilkin will provide the commentary.
RTÉ Radio’s resident rugby commentator Michael Corcoran will be bringing you complete coverage of all of Ireland’s Rugby World Cup matches live from New Zealand.
We will also be punctuating RTÉ Radio’s usual schedule with exclusive news, interviews and updates throughout the tournament, brought to you by the country’s top commentators and sports broadcasters.
Michael first toured with the Irish rugby team in 2000, when they travelled to Argentina, USA and Canada. He has completed two British and Irish Lions tours, to Australia in 2001 and to New Zealand in 2005.
RTÉ Sport’s Rugby World Cup coverage across television, radio and online is sponsored by O2.