Challenge Cup final Not in HD


Dave Duke

The BBC have very few major live sporting events left in their schedule.

You would think they would make the most of any 'showpiece' finals. But sadly no.

The Challenge Cup Final this Saturday will not be shown in High Definition. :thumbsdow

This is the first Rugby League match at the new Wembley and it will be watched by 90,000 fans and millions at home.

Is it another case of southern bias by those 'trendy' Notting Hill-Frappuccino-BBC types who seem to like their Rugby Union in HD but not Rugby League.



Distinguished Member
Just sent the following to the BBC and have to agree a certain bias

Even though I know BBC HD is trial channel can I ask why the Challenge Cup Final which will be shown on 25/08/07 isn't being shown in HD.

The corporation has dedicated time to show football and rugby union matches in HD but have blatently ignored one of Rugby League's show pieces and the first Rugby final back at Wembley. Why?

Won't make any difference but I would love to understand the Beebs thinking (or lack off)on this one. Maybe Sky should be able to broadcast the final as well


Active Member
It makes no sense at all. I understand that the England V Germany football match is being shown from Wembley in HD on Wednesday. Why not just leave it all set up for a few days and then show the Rugby.

Im not keen on Rugby but Im all for it in HD. No doubt when the Rugby is being played we will get more BBC HD Preview. Can it really cost that much to show given all the kit is going to be there on Wednesday? The staff are going to be there with their normal cameras so it sounds like it will actually be cheaper for them to show it in HD, if you think they have to take all the HD stuff away and replace with a SD Outside Broadcast setup. Unless these cameras just have a toggle switch HD/SD!!

Would love to hear their response You can see what else (Football only sorry) is on HD this year here


Active Member
Match of the Day Live: England v Israel

The Israel one is but thats about it.


Active Member
Although I dont know this is the reason for sure, But what I do know is that BBC resources have a contract with Sky/BBC sport to film non live premiership matches they normally use their two main HD units ob10 and ob12 because they are most up to date and means that they can do a full edit cut straight away and if i remember correctly the contract states it has to be at least a 15 camera production. I think the other HD unit ob2 is in use for the BBC proms and would not be suitable for the Rugby i would imagine that Ob11 will be at Wembley on Sat as that is the only unit with the correct amount of SD equipment .


Active Member
All valid and interesting points. However, would it not make sense to leave that unit at Wembley on Wednesday and then use again on Saturday.

Martin J.

Active Member
Just think of the other headline sports the BBC has not made an effort to broadcast in HD. Royal Ascot, Grand National and so on.


Active Member
Sadly MKCurtis its all down to contracts that they have which probaly states exactly which ob units have to be used and what equipment as well for the premiership coverage. i know Arqiva had a problem with a router on their ob1 unit last year was found on thurs and due at Bolton on the Sat and tried to get Sky to allow them to use another unit but wouldnt have it very easily wanted technical proof that the other was unuseable.
It is not hard actually to rig and de rig at most modern stadiums as they are fibre/triax cabled up so just short runs and any additionals the crew want.
I have not been to Wembley yet but others have and say so easy whole compound underground, i did an Emirates game last year and that was easy and modern the clean feed was fed straight around the stadium to show on their plasmas on concourses.


Distinguished Member
Just received a reply from the bbc :nono:

Thank you for contacting the BBC regarding 'Rugby League: St Helens v Catalans Dragons' coverage.

As you are aware, the HD TV is a trial and is only broadcast for three to four hours a day. Therefore, the choice of programmes and events to be broadcast in HD is frequently very difficult.

Our choice has to be selective and no matter how carefully such decisions are made, we are always aware that some people may disagree with them. Please be assured that I have registered your request that the Challenge Cup Final be broadcast on HD and have drawn it to the attention of senior management and the HD programme schedulers. Your feedback will help us when making decisions about future HD broadcasts.

I hope that you will enjoy the coverage of the match on BBC ONE. For further details please visit:

May I thank you once again for contacting the BBC.


BBC Information


Active Member
Sky was able to show the Yawnion England v France in HD using the red button as opposed to SSHD1 or 2 and this made it free.
Surely the Beeb could do the same if there are restrictions on using BBCHD channel.

I was disappointed with the final... Result

From a wiganer.

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