The Six Nations is set to stay on free-to-air television after tournament organisers reached an agreement in principle with existing broadcasters BBC and ITV to continue sharing coverage of the men’s and women’s tournaments.
Six Nations Rugby said it had entered into ‘exclusive discussions’ with the two broadcasters over a four-year deal which will run from 2022 to the end of the 2025 edition of the tournament.
The BBC will broadcast all Scotland and Wales home Six Nations matches. ITV will show all England, Ireland, Italy and France home games.
The women’s Six Nations will be screened on the BBC with what the Six Nations describe as ‘unprecedented broadcast investment’.
There will also be coverage of the men’s under-20s championship on the BBC.
In a statement, Six Nations Rugby said: ‘Six Nations Rugby today confirmed that it has entered into exclusive discussions with BBC and ITV after an agreement in principle was reached relating to all three Six Nations Championships.
‘Fans will continue to enjoy widespread coverage of rugby’s greatest championships throughout the United Kingdom due to an enhanced agreement between Six Nations Rugby and the two broadcasters, who have worked together since 2016.
‘The agreement has a four-year term starting in 2022 and ending after the 2025 Championships.’
The government rejected a move in March 2020 to include the Six Nations as a category A event. These competitions, which include the rugby union World Cup final, the football World Cup, Wimbledon, the Grand National and the Olympic and Paralympic Games, must have live coverage available on free-to-air channels.