ESPN to televise II World Cup of Softball
Oklahoma City, OK—The Amateur Softball Association of America (ASA) announced today that it has reached an agreement with ESPN that makes ESPN networks the exclusive domestic home of the II World Cup of Softball, July 13-17 in Oklahoma City.
In 2005, over 18,000 fans attended the five-day event where Japan upset the USA, the 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist, 3-1. Fans from over 30 different states visited Oklahoma City with over $1 million generated in economic impact. The event was televised in over 20 different countries and watched by over six million U.S. households.
ESPN and ESPN2 will offer six live telecasts, highlighted by the ESPN2 telecast of the July 17 championship game from the ASA Hall of Fame Complex in Oklahoma City. ESPN will televise all five of Team USA’s round robin games against China, Japan, Great Britain, Australia and Canada. A detailed broadcast schedule is below:
Date Game Time (Eastern)
Thursday, July 13 USA vs. Australia 7:30 PM
Friday, July 14 USA vs. China 7:00 PM
Saturday, July 15 USA vs. Canada 12:00 PM
Saturday, July 15 USA vs. Japan 8:00 PM
Sunday, July 16 USA vs. Great Britain 1:00 PM
Monday, July 17 Championship Game 9:00 PM
"ESPN has done a terrific job in broadcasting softball events throughout the world and we are excited to continue our relationship with them," said Ron Radigonda, Executive Director of the ASA. “This world class event brings tremendous exposure to our sport as we continue to emphasize the ever increasing global competitiveness.”
“Our team is looking forward to bringing the Cup back where it belongs”, adds USA Softball Women’s National Team Head Coach Mike Candrea. “Japan really took it to us last year in the Championship Game so trying to find ways to motivate our team won’t be a problem.“
Softball has been a ratings winner for our networks and we couldn’t be more pleased than to feature the USA Softball Women’s National Team in one of the biggest events of the year” said Laura Sandillo, ESPN’s Strategic Program Planner. “Last year’s inaugural World Cup was a complete success and we expect an even better event in 2006.”
Tulsa, OK-based Winnercomm will handle all aspects of the television broadcast related services including sponsorship sales, remote production and production design.
The final details for global distribution are still being finalized but will at minimum include deals in Asia, parts of Europe, Latin America, Central America, Canada and Australia. ESPN will also have rights for all its new media platforms including Mobile ESPN (the company's new mobile phone), ESPN.com and ESPN360 (broadband).
Tickets for the II World Cup of Softball are now on sale and can be purchased by visiting www.softballoutlet.com
or by calling 1-800-654-8337. All-session reserved seats are $50 and all-session general admission tickets are available for $30.
Fans can also purchase the Ultimate Fan package which includes an all-session reserved seat in the premier section of the stadium, a personalized replica jersey and dinner with Team USA as well as an autograph session with the team. The Ultimate Fan Package can be purchased for only $250.
II World Cup of Softball
The II World Cup of Softball, a 6-team tournament sanctioned by the International Softball Federation (ISF), will feature the best fast pitch softball players in the world competing for their respective national teams. The six teams invited to participate in the event will compete in pool play from July 13-July 16. The top two teams from pool play will be seeded into the Championship Game while the remaining teams to battle for third and fifth place respectively.
ESPN AND ASA
Last September, ESPN and the Amateur Softball Association reached an agreement affording the sport with guaranteed windows of programming for mutually agreed upon softball content including the USA Softball Women’s National Team and the ASA Gold 18-Under National Championship.
ASA AND WINNERCOMM
Last October, the ASA signed a sales and production related services agreement with Tulsa, OK-based Winnercomm allowing for unprecedented full service agency representation and broadcast design for softball related content on ESPN. The ASA and Winnercomm are currently seeking business partners interested in targeting teenage girls and adult men and women with an active family oriented lifestyle.
ABOUT THE ASA
The Amateur Softball Association, founded in 1933, is the National Governing Body of softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. The ASA has become one of the nation’s largest sports organizations and now sanctions competition in every state through a network of 87 local associations. The ASA has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 240,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than three million. For more information on the ASA, visit www.asasoftball.com
Winnercomm, Inc. is America’s largest independent sports production, program development, marketing services and sales representation company with offices in Tulsa, Dallas, New York, Chicago and Nashville. Winnercomm-produced telecasts have won 12 Emmy Awards. The company produces over 1,000 hours of programming annually for ESPN and 13 other networks and owns the high-flying Skycam that has produced the unique overhead shots on ABC's Monday Night Football and ESPN's Sunday Night Football. Winnercomm programming includes horse racing (NTRA), professional rodeo (PRCA Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, Wrangler ProRodeo Winter and Summer Tours, Pace Picante Finales, Xtreme Bulls), soccer (MLS, U.S. Soccer), bowling (PBA), lacrosse (MLL), softball (ASA/USA World Cup of Softball), cheerleading and dance (Varsity Brands), golf (LPGA, Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational, People vs. the Pros, Trump Million Dollar Invitational), fishing (BASS), snowmobile and ATV racing (PowerSports Entertainment), hunting, sporting dogs, adventure and original entertainment.
ABOUT LEVERAGE SPORTS AGENCY
Leverage Sports Agency, LLC is a full sports service sports marketing agency focused on sponsorship sales for leagues, events and television properties with offices in NYC, Boston, Chicago and Charlotte. Leverage Sports works with the National Lacrosse League, ASA/USA Softball, NASCAR, Champions Cup Tennis Tour, America's Swim and Fitness Festival among other events and sports properties.