Just when the SABC and Premier Soccer League were waiting to hear the
outcome of a court application regarding the broadcasting of matches,
e.tv threw a spanner in the works by bringing an application to be
recognised as an interested party, writes Siyabonga Mkhwanazi in The Star.

Just when the SABC and Premier Soccer League were waiting to hear the outcome of a court application regarding the broadcasting of matches, e.tv threw a spanner in the works by bringing an application to be recognised as an interested party.

Judge Guy Hoffman, of the Johannesburg High Court, had to rule on whether to grant the public broadcaster an order to prevent the league from negotiating with third parties to televise PSL matches in the new season while the two parties were discussing a new offer.

On Tuesday, the SABC brought an urgent application to the High Court to restrain the PSL from putting out a tender for a contract for the 2007/8 season. The current contract between the two parties, believed to be worth about R500-million, ends at the end of May.

The SABC argued that it had an agreement with the league that they have to give them first refusal in negotiating a new contract. Only if the SABC rejects the league's offer, then can they negotiate with third parties.

The PSL was in breach of this agreement because they had already started discussing with other parties like e.tv and Supersport channel, argued the public broadcaster. The league, however, claimed that no such legal obligation existed.

Click here to read the full report, posted on iol.co.za.