This column isn’t about to spark a debate about the game’s connection to sports – because I would probably lose it too – but boxing fans, whether they like the beat or not, are they are being asked to do a punt this weekend if they want to tune in to the big fight.
Anthony Joshua – half of the most talked about fight of the year – will be in the ring against Oleksandr Usyk, not the other half of the most talked about fight of the year.
Tyson Fury, if he wants to keep an eye on his potential opponent, can watch at home and if he does, he’ll have to pay for it on Sky Box Office.
I have often wondered why boxing is the ultimate pay-per-view event in this country. WWE wrestling does – but viewers are guaranteed three or four hours of entertainment by the very nature of their product. And it’s not that I’m advocating such a move, but with football and rugby you’ll have about an hour and a half of live competition guaranteed.
With boxing, you could shell out £ 25 for a match that could end in seconds.
It’s a gamble and while the big fight, according to the bookies looks pretty one-sided, the odds at least suggest that it will go all the way and there is a decent undercard as well.
Sticking to Sky, they gave a strong buildup in combat, but the big event for the rest of this month has an entire channel dedicated to it – Sky Sports Ryder Cup, 405 on Sky and 505 on Virgin.
The Whistling Straits Thursday Night Opening Ceremony will air at 10 p.m., but there’s plenty to get in the mood before then with the various packages and briefs as well as previews of the great golf derby in constant evolution.
Sunday, the foursome are on the pitch, but it’s also football derby day in three of the world’s major cities – Rome, New York and London. New York Red Bulls host New York City, Arsenal take on Tottenham and Roma meet Lazio on various channels – all far removed from BBC Scotland’s offer 48 hours earlier with Arbroath v Kilmarnock from a Gayfield Park without no doubt windswept.
It also complements many national midweek football action, as
The Berwick Rangers host Gretna 2008 on the same channel tonight (September 20) and
the Premier Sports Cup resumes, you guessed it, Premier Sports.
The Rangers are at home in Livingston on Wednesday night and the Remote can train with Dundee v St Johnstone on the other side at the same time. The batteries and buttons will continue to take hits on Thursday in the same scenario with Celtic v Raith Rovers on the main channel and Dundee United v Hibs on PS2.
Every game is worth watching, but anything related to the in-game ads on either side of the bet will be worth listening to because, given last week’s controversy and previous preferences of the players. Premier Sports experts, there will be a lot of interest in how each broadcast is broadcast. match summaries and analysts line up as well.