ESPN Selling U.S. Fans Live-Streaming Access To Cricket World Cup For $99.99

While cricket doesn’t enjoy the immense popularity it inspires in other countries, fans of the sport who’ve been going without their fixes here in the United States will have a way to watch the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup: In a first for ESPN, the network is selling live-streaming access to the cup’s 49 matches in February and March for $99.99.

ESPN is calling it a one-time deal, notes CNNMoney, but if it’s a success, it’s likely that it could happen again in the future.

It’s the first time ESPN has sold programming directly to consumers, a trend that’s gaining steam lately. Just yesterday, Nickelodeon announced its own direct-to-consumer subscription, which will start this year. Others like HBO and Showtime have also said they’re planning similar services for customers who don’t want to get cable or satellite services.

ESPN is keeping those providers in the loop with this deal, however, teaming up with Dish Network, Time Warner Cable and Mediacom so that customers can buy the cricket package through those providers as well. Prices will vary on those packages, as each provider will get to set the cost.

It’s worth pointing out that Re/code first reported that this would happen last November, so it’s not a total surprise that it’s come to fruition.

Russell Wolf, an ESPN executive vice president calls the “digital subscription service” as a “complement to our core networks and the value of the multichannel environment.”

You see, ESPN isn’t trying to overthrow The Man, just exist alongside him, with him, if you will. Everyone makes money, everyone wins, as it’s a chance for ESPN to “develop new expertise and agility in a dynamic media environment.”

ESPN selling Cricket World Cup on the Web [CNNMoney]

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