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SBD Global/October 7, 2013/Media

BT TV CEO Marc Watson Defends Role Of BT Sport In Heineken Cup

For a man painted by some as "one of the catalysts for the demise of the ­Heineken Cup in its present form," BT TV CEO Marc Watson "is remarkably unfazed," according to Mark Souster of the LONDON TIMES. Watson said, "We are comfortable we didn't cause the issues that are there. It is presented as us having a role in the problems with that tournament. Those problems clearly pre-existed." He "does appreciate, though, that this is a seminal moment for rugby in the northern hemisphere and he wants BT to be heavily involved in whatever emerges." Watson: "We think we give a great ­option and options are a good things. We are a big business willing to invest in the sport." Watson said that "it would be absurd if there was no ­European Cup next year." Watson: "That does not make sense for anybody. Faced with reaching agreement or having no European Cup, everyone is incentivised to reach agreement." The deal for league and European rights with Premiership Rugby is worth £152 M ($243M). How that is split, Watson "will not divulge." Watson: "But everyone who takes part will do very well out of that" (LONDON TIMES, 10/4).

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