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SBD/January 18, 2011/Media
ESPN Begins Australian Open Coverage Without Analyst Mary Carillo
Published January 18, 2011
COVERING THE RAFA SLAM: MULTICHANNEL NEWS' Mike Reynolds noted Rafael Nadal is attempting to "win the Australian Open and thus hold all four of tennis' major titles at once," and such a run "figures to boost ESPN2's Nielsens, despite the 16-hour difference between Australia and the East Coast in the U.S. and 19 hours to the Pacific time zone." ESPN2 "plans a record 124 live hours, plus nearly 50 additional afternoon encores, the most in its 27-year history with the Australian." Coverage "will be enhanced by ESPN2's use of the 'spider cam' it unveiled at Ashe Stadium at the 2010 U.S. Open." ESPN3.com "will offer 600 live hours, with users choosing between matches on seven courts," and "all of that action is available on-demand after their completion." Meanwhile, Tennis Channel is "scheduled to present close to 30 hours of live match play over the fortnight, beginning with the initial day of play through the singles quarterfinals, doubles championships and mixed-doubles final." The network will offer 70 total hours of live and encore coverage (MULTICHANNEL.com, 1/16).
OUT OF LINE: The AAP's Robert Grant reported a New Zealand TV journalist yesterday "again disrupted" Maria Sharapova's post-match media conference, marking the "third time the man has appeared when she has been scheduled to speak during the past two weeks." Last weekend, the man "asked her if she spent time with compatriot Anna Kournikova and frequented a club for 'hot Russians.'" Sharapova: "You're the guy from New Zealand, huh? Oh God, you're stalking me!" The journalist jokingly replied, "It's not stalking if you love someone." Australian Open officials "were yet to decide on whether to caution the man" (AAP, 1/17).