ESPN and BBC to share darts coverage

British public broadcaster the BBC is to share coverage of the 2012 World Professional Darts Championship with ESPN after the pay broadcaster snapped up some rights.

The Disney-backed broadcaster has struck a deal with governing body British Darts Organization (BDO) to air evening matches of the tournament, which is hosted in January 2012. The BBC, meanwhile, will still air live afternoon darts coverage as well as run extended evening highlights. This follows ESPN’s first live darts broadcast earlier this year with coverage of the 2011 Winmau World Masters in September.

Barry Gilbey, chairman, BDO, says: “Both ESPN and the BBC are brand leaders in televised sport and we are delighted that the 2012 Lakeside World Professional will benefit from their combined technical expertise and know-how. These are exciting times for our players as the BDO moves ever forward in its mission statement to provide darts for all.”