SA20 cleared the hurdle that Global League T20 and Mzansi Super League fell, securing a ten-year deal with Viacom18 for an undisclosed fee to broadcast the tournament in India. ESPNcricinfo understands that CSA has also reached an agreement with the broadcaster to show South Africa’s bilateral fixtures for the next decade.
The deal is believed to be below the SA20’s asking price of US$100 million for a ten-year period, but an insider has described it as a “game changer” for South African cricket and says that it would guarantee that the SA20 would return a profit. the first year compared to the original five-year forecast.
The Global League T20, which was supposed to start in the 2017-18 season and featured team owners from the IPL and PSL, never started as apparently no broadcast deal was reached. However, Haroon Lorgat, the former CSA chief executive, has long maintained that a broadcast deal is in place and the league has instead been stymied by political wrangling within the board.
Lorgat and CSA parted ways that season and his successor, Thabang Moroe, initially tried to make the GLT20 a reality, but then dropped out.
Under Moroe, the CSA then created the Mzansi Super League, with no private ownership. The six-team tournament was held twice, in 2018 and 2019, but was unable to acquire a major broadcast deal. Instead, it was televised on South Africa’s free-to-air service SABC, which paid CSA nothing to bring the competition to screens.
The Moroe era left CSA’s finances in dire straits and, with international fixtures dwindling, in April this year CSA announced a third attempt at a franchise T20 tournament – the SA20.
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