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Aviva Premiership Rugby makes history with first match live on terrestrial TV

Travis PerkinsSponsored by Travis Perkins

Premiership Rugby can today confirm that history will be made at Twickenham Stadium on 30 December when Harlequins v Northampton Saints will be the League’s first match to be broadcast live on terrestrial TV.

In a landmark moment for the sport the match will be simulcast on BT Sport and Channel 5, the first of five matches to be shown by the terrestrial broadcaster this season. The match comes as part of a new four-year deal, which includes a Sunday evening highlights programme at 8pm showcasing the best of Aviva Premiership Rugby.

Channel 5’s coverage will be presented by Mark Durden-Smith and former England prop David Flatman, with “Flats” also supporting broadcaster Connor McNamara on commentary duties.

David Flatman said “There’s always a huge buzz during the festive period when the fans turn out in big numbers at Twickenham. It’s a privilege to see in the New Year with some of the top performers in a head to head battle.”

British Hockey Olympic Gold Medalist Sam Quek and former Northampton and England International Paul Grayson complete Channel 5’s team.

Sam Quek said “I am absolutely delighted to be joining the Channel 5 team for the first of the landmark live matches. As a rugby fan, I cannot wait to get down to Twickenham on the day for what should be a fantastic match for the neutrals!"

“The Big Game”, hosted annually by Harlequins as one of their regular home games, is a festive fixture like no other, taking place each December at Twickenham. Big Game 10, will celebrate ten electric years at the home of rugby, and is taking place on Saturday 30 December, kicking off at 4pm.

Channel 5’s coverage at Twickenham Stadium will be produced by Sunset + Vine who has been producing live coverage of the Premiership since 2009. The company has transformed how live action is brought to the screens. From the first introduction of pitch walks to pre-game interviews with players warming up, innovation has been key. It’s relationship with the rugby authorities has led to the development of ref-cam and TMO decision-making.

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