A new “ultra-competitive” tennis contest is to be shown subscription-free by UKTV’s Dave.
The channel has secured exclusive rights to Tie Break Tens, a “fast-paced” short format of tennis in which each match is a first-to-ten point tie break. Every tournament awards a winner-take-all cheque after a single, four-hour session of super-charged high-pressure tennis.
Hosted by Ore Oduba and Produced by Sunset+Vine for Dave, live coverage starts with Madrid (Thursday 4 May) with British No. 1 and current World No. 7 Jo Konta competing against French Open champion Garbine Muguruza, former World No.1 Maria Sharapova, 2012 Wimbledon runner-up and World No 8 Agnieszka Radwanska, World No. 5 Simona Halep, Olympic gold-medallist Monica Puig and big-hitting American Madison Keys.
Viewers will also see US Open champion and World No 3 Stan Wawrinka, World No.5 Kei Nishikori, Bulgarian star Grigor Dimitrov and Spanish trio David Ferrer, Fernando Verdasco and Feliciano Lopez battle it out along with French flier Lucas Pouille.
Steve North, general manager for Dave, said: “The Tie Break Tens format is an excellent way to get shorter and faster matches giving a thrilling evening of tennis entertainment. It’s looking to do for tennis what Twenty20 did for cricket with significant levels of prize money attracting the very best players.”
Victoria Sinclair, of Tie Break Tens, said: “We are delighted to welcome Dave on-board as exclusive broadcaster of live Tie Break Tens in the UK.
“Tie Break Tens is a fast-paced, innovative short-format of tennis designed to give spectators and television viewers a fantastic night of intense competition and entertainment.
“Dave, an innovative, free-to-air channel is a perfect fit for us as we seek to reach as many sports fans as possible, as well as introducing tennis to a new audience.
“Our research has shown that Tie Break Tens is particularly appealing to a younger viewer, who appreciate the pace and pressure this format offers, and so we are confident our partnership will deliver just that.”
Dave’s social media via @davechannel on Twitter and the channel’s Facebook and Snapchat feeds will provide second screen coverage with point by point commentary on the games, plus behind-the-scenes interviews. #TB10Madrid #TieBreakTens