The Tennis Channel will essentially become the 2010 BNP Paribas Open network during the next two weeks, adjusting its programming schedule for the Indian Wells, Calif.-based men’s and women’s tournament, one of the most celebrated events of the year. The channel plans 90 hours of live coverage over the 12-day competition, including the men’s and women’s singles finals, a tennis-legends “Hit For Haiti” exhibition, and seven consecutive days of close to 12 hours of back-to-back matches.
Tournament coverage begins with “Hit For Haiti presented by Oracle” Friday, March 12, at 10:30 p.m. ET. The exhibition will feature a lineup of Grand Slam champions that includes Martina Navratilova, Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Lindsay Davenport, Steffi Graf, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Justine Henin. Proceeds from ticket sales and viewer contributions will support American Red Cross relief efforts in Haiti. Tennis Channel will run an on-screen crawl with donation information for viewers and an encore replay of the event immediately following its conclusion. The network’s Web site, www.tennischannel.com, will also stream the event live and provide a link for visitors who want to contribute to Haiti relief. The exhibition will be accessible online via on-demand throughout the tournament, as will the donation link.
Tennis Channel’s first tournament-match coverage begins Saturday, March 13, at 2:00 p.m. ET. The network will keep cameras on the courts until 2:00 a.m. ET. Sunday, March 14, and repeat the process that afternoon. After the weekend’s play the on-air schedule begins at 3:00 p.m. ET daily, from Monday, March 15 through Sunday, March 21, when the women’s and men’s singles finals take place. In addition to 90 hours of live matches, Tennis Channel will offer 70 hours of “instant encore” matches. These replay blocks of the previous evening’s competitions begin at 6:00 a.m. or 7:00 a.m. ET and run up to the afternoon’s live coverage.
The network will bring Hall of Famer Tracy Austin to the booth during women’s matches, alongside sportscaster Brett Haber and field reporter Cari Champion. ATP Media’s Jason Goodall, Doug Adler and Robbie Koenig will handle Tennis Channel’s coverage of the men’s matches in Indian Wells, with the Emmy Award-winning Brian Webber providing off-camera hosting assistance.
Beyond its online activity for “Hit For Haiti,” www.tennischannel.com will go behind the scenes via Tennischannel.com Grounds Pass video updates, and post the network’s Court Report on-air and online news segments, produced from Indian Wells during the tournament. The network’s Web site will also host its popular Racquet Bracket tournament-prediction game.
Tennis Channel’s live BNP Paribas Open match schedule
|Saturday, March 13||2 p.m.-2 a.m.||Second-Round|
|Sunday, March 14||2 p.m.-2 a.m.||Second-Round, Third-Round|
|Monday, March 15||3 p.m.-2:30 a.m.||Third-Round|
|Tuesday, March 16||3 p.m.-2:30 a.m.||Third-Round, Round of 16|
|Wednesday, March 17||3 p.m.-2:30 a.m.||Round of 16, Women’s Quarterfinals|
|Thursday, March 18||3 p.m.-midnight||Men’s and Women’s Quarterfinals|
|Friday, March 19||3 p.m.-midnight||Men’s Quarterfinals, Women’s Semifinals|
|Saturday, March 20||3 p.m.-11 p.m.||Men’s Semifinals, Doubles Final|
|Sunday, March 21||3 p.m.-7:30 p.m.||Women’s Final, Men’s Final|
For more information, visit www.tennischannel.com.