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Posted at: Mar 24, 2019, 7:52 AM; last updated: Mar 24, 2019, 7:52 AM (IST)

ISSF disbands its broadcast arm, ropes in IMG-Reliance

Vinayak Padmadeo
Tribune News Service
NEW DELHI, March 23 

There is no live broadcast or streaming of the shooting World Cup currently on in Acapulco, Mexico, despite its significance as an event from which eight quota spots for the 2020 Olympic Games will be disbursed. The reason is that the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF), shooting’s governing body, has decided to disband ISSF TV, which was responsible for the coverage.

ISSF has entered into an understanding with IMG-Reliance to broadcast shooting events, starting with the World Cup at Al-Ain (UAE), scheduled to be held from April 5. ISSF vice-president Raninder Singh, who is in charge of the shooting body’s marketing committee, media and TV rights, said that the modalities of the understanding are yet to be worked out. “There was too little time to organise coverage of Acapulco event once we decided to do away with the old format ISSF TV,” Singh told The Tribune from Zagreb, Croatia, where the ISSF Executive Committee meeting is being held.

“The live broadcast will return from the Al-Ain World Cup. And yes, Reliance is on board but on a case-to-case basis. It is not long-term. They were part of the broadcast crew during the New Delhi World Cup too,” Singh added.

‘Wrong decision’

However, not everybody is pleased with the decision. Daniele di Spigno, serial winner at the World Championships and the World Cup in double trap, and now member of ISSF’s Athlete Committee, said the decision was “wrong”. “It is not an easy sport to cover especially for the cameramen. Those with ISSF weren’t good when they started... But now when they know the sport, they have been done away with,” Spigno said. “The new guys will struggle doing live coverage. And this is happening at a time when the sport is getting dragged into debates of whether our sport deserves a place on the Olympic programme, especially in the immediate aftermath of a gun-related matter like Christchurch (mosque shooting).” He has reported the matter to the Athletes Committee, which will discuss it in its next meeting.

Meanwhile, ISSF has put its decision on hosting rights of India on hold. India is scheduled to hold a combined ISSF World Cup (rifle, pistol and shotgun) in 2020.

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