BBC Adds Faldo, Steps Up Golf Coverage After Criticism
The BBC "has responded" to criticism of its golf coverage earlier this year by R&A CEO Peter Dawson by adding former golfer Nick Faldo to its Open Championship coverage this weekend, according to Brian Barwick of the London DAILY MAIL. The BBC will broadcast 40 hours of live coverage over four days across BBC1 and BBC2. Earlier this year, Dawson "pitched in with a well-aimed criticism" of the BBC’s commitment to golf in terms of hours and money. He said the number of hours had "dwindled" and the money "plateaued." The Open Championship gives the BBC the chance to show some "lurve," and golf's governing body, the R&A, "expect nothing less." The BBC "can’t allow themselves too many fist-fights in the broadcast rights market," and so are in the business of "maximising the value of what they have." Announcer Peter Alliss remains "the signature voice of the sport" and listening to him last weekend at the Scottish Open, it was evident he is still "the man to beat" (DAILY MAIL, 7/19).
DIXON OUT: The DAILY MAIL also reported football pundit Lee Dixon has announced "he's quitting the BBC," with rivals ITV "readying a deal to land" the former Arsenal and England defender. Dixon, 48, is being "lined up to replace" pundit Gareth Southgate when he is appointed FA technical director. Dixon revealed on Twitter that he "wouldn't be renewing his deal with the Beeb." Dixon wrote, "Sad to be leaving BBC. Nothing lasts forever. New challenges ahead. Loved my time there. Wonderful people... Just time to move on" (DAILY MAIL, 7/19).