In a carve up that exposed the extent of the financial plight facing the BBC, ITV was awarded all the home matches of England, Ireland and Italy, with its rival retaining those of Scotland, Wales and France.
That gave ITV seven of the 10 Six Nations games England play every two years, with the BBC left with only their fixture in Wales in odd-numbered years.
Of the 45 matches ITV will show over the duration of the six year contract, almost half will feature England, compared to one-fifth of those broadcast by the BBC.
The beleaguered corporation instead retained the rights to 12 of the 18 fixtures played biennially by Scotland and Wales, including all those at Murrayfield and the Millennium Stadium.
The BBC said that demonstrated its commitment to remaining the broadcaster for the whole of the UK.
But ratings for England matches are likely to far outstrip those for other countries, meaning there is no doubt ITV has got the better end of the deal.
Especially when you consider the £50 million-a-year contract – which does give the BBC live radio rights – has been split virtually down the middle.
Games have been divided so the BBC will show eight fixtures one year and seven the next, and vice-versa for ITV.
Securing the prize of all Twickenham matches also means the BBC being effectively locked out of rugby’s headquarters for what could be years, potentially until 2021.
ITV holds the exclusive rights to the Rugby World Cup, which is being staged in England this year, while Sky Sports last year renewed its contract for their autumn internationals until 2020.
The rights share effectively spells the end of ‘Super Saturday’, during which the BBC showed the final three fixtures of the championship back to back.
Presuming the concept survives, those games will now be shared with ITV.
There could also now be a battle for John Inverdale’s services as presenter of each channel’s coverage, unless they agree to share him beyond the World Cup.
BBC director of sport Barbara Slater said: “It’s great news for fans of the Six Nations that the championship will be staying on free-to-air television. It’s a very special competition and our viewing figures from this year prove just how popular it is with audiences. We very much look forward to starting our new partnership with ITV and continuing our strong relationship with RBS 6 Nations.”
Slater’s ITV counterpart, Niall Sloane, added:“As ITV prepares to bring viewers exclusive, free-to-air live coverage of the Rugby World Cup later this year, we’re delighted to be strengthening our ties with the game by bringing audiences the first-class, live action and unique atmosphere of the RBS 6 Nations from next year.”
BBC Six Nations fixtures (2016-21)
Scotland v England, Wales v England, France v England, Scotland v Wales, Scotland v Ireland, Scotland v France, Scotland v Italy, Wales v Scotland, Wales v Ireland, Wales v France, Wales v Italy, France v Scotland, France v Wales, France v Ireland, France v Italy.
ITV Six Nations fixtures (2016-21)
England v Scotland, England v Wales, England v Ireland, England v France, England v Italy, Ireland v England, Italy v England, Ireland v Scotland, Ireland v Wales, Ireland v France, Ireland v Italy, Italy v Scotland, Italy v Wales, Italy v Ireland, Italy v France.london west end london weather november london xmas london xmas markets london xi london xr london xmas bandeau london xrp london xoyo london xxl london yellow london young london york london young thug london yearly weather london yard london yellow net worth london zip code london zoo london zip code uk london zones london zip london zones map london zack and cody london zillow london about the city london about essay london about tammy london about history london about mask about london eye about london bridge about london in english london after midnight band london after midnight found london after midnight movie london after midnight kiss lyrics london after dark london after midnight found 2021 london after ww2 london against e5 london against king's indian london against dutch london against lockdown london against c5 london against corona london against sicilian london against brexit london among us fallen london among the monster-hunting academics fallen london among the dead edifice in london among the higher kind london around christmas london around the world london around places visit london around areas london around hiking around london around london poem around london in 40 steps london as diet london as a first name london as a girl name london as a name london as diet recipes london as a boy name london as atlantic port city the light at the bottom of the world london shah london pool top of building best rooftop swimming pool london london at christmas london at night london at christmas time london at midnight london at night wallpaper london at night joke london at home covid test london at new years london before and after ww2 london before the great fire london before the romans london before sewers london before industrial revolution london before it was london london before ww1 london before ww2 london behind the scenes tours london behind vaccine london behind time london behind scenes behind london fields behind london tooting london grammar behind her eyes london is behind me london beneath the pavement beneath london beneath london book beneath london tour beneath london documentary london lies beneath fallen london beneath the neath london lies beneath review oli london beside jimin radley london beside the sea cities beside london hotel beside london eye country beside london places beside london hotels beside london city airport bridge beside london eye london between christmas and new years london between font london between the bridges london between the wars london between between london and birmingham between london and manchester london pool between buildings london beyond retro london beyond sight london beyond meat london beyond burger london beyond meat burger beyond london beyond london club beyond london agency london butchers london but me but london julie london but not for me best buy london london nothing but thieves buy house london 2am london but first prosecco london by william blake london by william blake analysis london by english laundry london by night london by william blake theme london by edward rutherfurd london by citizen bike london by land sea and air london contra jody london contra costa london barndance contra london pro und contra london during christmas london during ww2 london during the blitz london during the industrial revolution london during winter london during christmas time london during shakespeare's time london during covid london evening standard london evening tours london evening gowns london evening standard archives london evening standard business london evening dresses london evening standard crossword london evening news archive london for christmas london for kids london for sale london for new years london for rent london for men burberry london for thanksgiving london for a week london from suite life on deck london from daisy of love london from shahs of sunset london from suite life on deck now london from ready to love london from paris london from above london from suite life london between font free download pool in london between buildings