Is this the end for Channel 9 and cricket?

The Crowd Roar Guru

By Brian Zhang , 18 Feb 2013 The Crowd is a Roar Guru

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    Nine Entertainment Group (Image: Supplied)

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    The end of the 2012/13 Australian Summer may have been the last of Channel 9′s 35-year broadcast of cricket in Australia.

    Nine are set to broadcast the Ashes later this year but their seven-year deal with Cricket Australia to broadcast Test matches, ODIs and T20s has now expired.

    Rivals Network Ten are hard at work to grab the rights.

    If Channel Ten are successful with the deal, it may see the end of longtime commentators in Richie Benaud, Bill Lawry and possibly Ian Chappell time in the commentary box.

    The other commentators in Mark Nicolas who works with Channel 5 in England, Mark Taylor, Ian Healy, Michael Slater and James Brayshaw may all make the move to Channel Ten alongside recently retired Michael Hussey, Brett Lee and recent Hall of Fame inductee Glenn McGrath.

    During this season, the lost of Tony Greig has really left a massive hole in the Channel 9 commentary team. With Bill Lawry only calling games in Melbourne and Richie Benaud losing his touch, it just hasn’t been the same commentary team that once was probably the best in the world.

    The replacement commentators in Mark Taylor, Ian Healy, and James Brayshaw, have produced mixed results.

    It will be very interesting to see the technology that Channel Ten have to offer and whether it matches what Channel Nine had.

    In terms of technology, cameras and audio, Channel Nine probably had the best in the world which included the likes of hotspot, snicko, super slow motion replays, Hawkeye and virtual eye, protractor and the newly introduced nine360 cam.

    It has been 35 years since Kerry Packer secured the rights for Channel 9 to broadcast international cricket in Australia.

    However, with Tony Greig sadly passed, Bill Lawry and Richie Benaud nearing their end, it is time for the new generation of commentators to take over, a new network and a new era to begin.

    Some of the best Channel 9 moments: