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Last Updated: Sunday, 10 December 2006, 08:17 GMT
Cricket bosses agree new TV deal
Representatives of the 10 Test-playing nations (copyright ICC)
The deal was agreed at an ICC board meeting in Dubai
The value of television rights for the next two Cricket World Cups and 16 other tournaments has doubled with a new eight-year deal.

ESPN-Star Sports reportedly bid $1.1bn (563m) to become the International Cricket Council's global media and production partner from 2007 to 2015.

The figure was not officially disclosed but the ICC said "it was significantly in excess of the previous deal."

The previous deal, which ran from 2000 to 2007, was worth $550 million.

The bid, which covers two World Cups, a minimum of three Champions Trophy tournaments and the first two Twenty20 world championships, was agreed by an ICC board meeting in Dubai on Saturday.

Chairman David Morgan was the England and Wales Cricket Board representative at the meeting.

"The decision was a unanimous one and the ICC will now seek to reach final agreement," an ICC statement said.

ESPN-Star Sports is jointly owned by News Corporation - which owns Sky TV in the UK - and the Walt Disney Company.

ICC president Percy Sonn said: "We are absolutely delighted that, after an open and transparent process, we have what we believe to be the best deal for cricket."

India's cricket board, which itself agreed a four-year TV deal worth $612m earlier this year, had initially bid for the ICC rights but pulled out last month after claims of a conflict of interest.

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