The AFL has announced what it calls a landmark agreement to broadcast matches live into China. AFL chief Andrew Demetriou was joined by Victorian Premier John Brumby on Wednesday as he made the announcement at Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium.
The Shanghai Media Group will televise one AFL match every week live into China on International Channel Shanghai.
The agreement will include the 2010 finals series and the Shanghai Showdown between Melbourne and the Brisbane Lions in Shanghai on October 17.
It will extend into the 2011 AFL Premiership season to include one AFL match each week.
“The AFL is very excited to showcase Australian football to one of the world’s biggest markets as we continue to develop the code on the international stage,” Demetriou said.
The AFL has also launched a development program in Shanghai schools to teach young children the basics of the game and recently launched a Mandarin language website, www.51afl.com.au.
Brumby boasted the agreement was a tremendous coup.
“(It’s an) opportunity for Victoria and will further strengthen links with our major trading partner and our friends in China,” he said.