The new five-year broadcast deal with Eurosport, announced today, is another important step towards making snooker a truly global sport.
There will be people reading this now who, but for Eurosport, would never have heard of snooker, let alone actually seen the game.
As an agent for the popularisation of snooker across Europe, the channel has been just as significant as the BBC was in the UK in the 1970s and 80s.
For instance, the success of the German Masters came off the back of the interest built up by screening tournaments regularly for the last few years.
Eurosport is available in 125 million homes in 59 countries and snooker is one of its most popular sports. It rates particularly well in Eastern Europe
The new contract will include not just the established tournaments but new ones as well plus coverage of all six EPTCs.
Put simply: there will be more snooker on TV this season than there has ever been.
The Eurosport deal increases the amount of tournaments the channel broadcasts from ten to 19.
Years ago, the only way to find out results from tournaments played in places like China was to check Ceefax or get the next day’s newspapers. Now, they are shown live.
There could be as many as 100 days of snooker broadcast by Eurosport in the next year.
The best way to promote the sport is to have people able to watch it. It’s going to be hard to avoid during the next few seasons.