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by Matt Smith

Some potentially important news regarding North American sport on FIVE was announced today. It has been known for a while that FIVE were looking to branch out into digital broadcasting with two new channels. One of the areas that FIVE have been able to win viewers is by buying-up US shows such as CSI and, more recently, House. It is no surprise therefore that one of the two new channels will focus solely on US programmes.

FIVE U.S. promises to bring us "the very best of American television in genres such as: established and new drama; comedy; films; sport and youth programming." This is as detailed as it gets so far and whether this will result in FIVE dropping U.S. sports coverage from their terrestrial channel is unknown.

Admittedly not all places in GB receive a digital signal at the moment, but FIVE's terrestrial coverage is still unobtainable for some people. Having a dedicated platform for North American sports can only be a good thing in the long term for us fans. At the very least it should ensure that we won't see World Series games cut-off before they end again (justifiably one of the biggest grievances about FIVE's coverage in the past).

The two new FIVE channels will be available through Freeview at no extra charge from the Autumn, so it is possible that the play-off coverage this season may be affected by the switch.

FIVE's official Press Release – Monday 5 June 2006.

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