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Masters announce new global strategy

The first two rounds of next year's Masters will be televised by ESPN as one component of a new global strategy announced on Wednesday by the tournament's organizers.

The USA network, a rival cable channel, had broadcast the opening rounds at the Masters since 1982.

"With the worldwide reach of ESPN and their demonstrated leadership in new media, we think ESPN is uniquely positioned to showcase the Masters and golf to new audiences," Augusta National Golf Club chairman Billy Payne said in a statement.

A Spanish-language broadcast of the first two rounds of the 2008 Masters, presented by ESPN Deportes, will be available in the U.S. for the first time.

Payne added that the opening major of the year would partner a small number of leading international companies to support the telecast as well as golf development programs outside the U.S.

"We think our new worldwide initiative is important," Payne said. "The other major golf organizations have rightly identified a need to accelerate the growth of golf throughout the world.

"We will utilize the goodwill of the Masters and our other resources in support of these bodies and programs."

The 2008 Masters will be played from April 10-13 when American Zach Johnson will defend the title.

 

October 11, 2007




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