BT Sport, Streamworks To Air Rio Ferdinand's Testimonial Between ManU, Sevilla
New channel BT Sport "has won the race" to screen the Aug. 9 testimonial match for ManU's Rio Ferdinand, according to Ruki Sayid of the London DAILY MIRROR. It is the first time a U.K. football testimonial "will be broadcast to a global audience." Sprinter Usain Bolt reportedly was to to play for ManU in the testimonial (DAILY MIRROR, 7/10). NBC SPORTS' Nick Zacardi reported Bolt's agent said in an email that Bolt "will not play" in the friendly the day before the 100m heats at the world championships. Bolt’s agent, Ricky Simms, said that Bolt "would have loved to play had the match been on a suitable date after track season" (NBC SPORTS, 7/9). CABLE's Nigel Adie reported the friendly between ManU and La Liga side Sevilla will take place at Old Trafford, with BT predicting that "it could prove to be one of the most-watched testimonials ever due to the coverage provided by Streamworks' global streaming operation." Viewers in up to 170 countries "will be able to tune into the game via a dedicated website" and, under the terms of the deal with BT, all football fans in the U.K. "can access the stream free of charge" (CABLE, 7/9).