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Big Bash League schedule released

Highest-qualifying team to host final, all matches broadcast live to all markets

This summer’s KFC Big Bash League final will return to the home ground of the highest qualifying team and all matches will be broadcast live into all venues following today’s release of the BBL|05 fixture.

Quick Single: View the full BBL|05 fixture

Those two much-discussed items headlined the release of the fixture for the 2015-16 summer, which runs from Thursday December 17 until Sunday January 24, and will also include four prime-time doubleheaders.

The season will get underway with the Thunder hosting the Sixers at their new permanent home base of Spotless Stadium, with the home side looking to win their first-ever Sydney Smash.

The now traditional fixtures will return following record-breaking crowds in BBL|04, with Adelaide Oval to again host a New Year’s Eve match (Strikers v Sixers), Boxing Day at the WACA (Scorchers v Heat) and the Melbourne Derbies to again be played across the first two Saturdays in January.

Unlike last summer’s schedule which saw Manuka Oval host the final as a result of World Cup complications, the highest-qualifying final team will earn the right to host the decider.

“The founding strengths of the BBL will continue with fun, fast-paced entertainment and affordable tickets on offer, with entry level prices remaining unchanged since the league’s inception,” said Cricket Australia Executive General Manager of Operations Mike McKenna.

“We’ve worked hard to ensure tickets are great value compared with other sports and family entertainment. 

“There will be some great match-ups for fans to enjoy with Michael Clarke to partner with Kevin Pietersen at the Melbourne Stars, the Melbourne Renegades’ Aaron Finch and Chris Gayle taking on the likes of Jacques Kallis at the Sydney Thunder and Kumar Sangakkara at the Hobart Hurricanes.”

Macquarie Radio Network will provide ball-by-ball commentary radio coverage of every match, while ABC radio will also broadcast the KFC Big Bash League final and WBBL final.

Every match will be available live on mobile devices via the Cricket Australia Live app, as well as live scores and highlights on bigbash.com.au.

“Just as the BBL continues to attract and develop world-class talent on the field, we’re equally as thrilled with the ever-increasing number of families that are choosing the BBL as their preferred form of entertainment during summer. Last season 43 per cent of attendees were families, with more new fans coming to our games than ever before.

“Last season we had record domestic cricket attendances in South Australia, New South Wales, Tasmania and the ACT, including the League’s record single match attendance of 52,633 at the Adelaide Strikers’ home semi-final which remains the biggest ever crowd at the redeveloped Adelaide Oval.

“Fans at home will again be treated to Network Ten’s award-winning coverage, with all matches to be shown live free-to-air in every market.

“This includes four BBL double-headers in prime-time viewing, along with eight live matches of our inaugural Women’s BBL, the WBBL – including the final – broadcast as double-headers to some of the BBL matches, demonstrating TEN’s wonderful ongoing commitment to the sport.”

Quick Single: Major signings unveiled at WBBL launch

Network Ten’s BBL coverage has become a regular feature of Australian summers and last season attracted an average audience of more than 943,000 people nationally, including a peak audience of 1.9m viewers for the final between the Scorchers and Sixers.

Post-Christmas, historically the highest attended period for the League, will see 27 matches in 29 days of BBL cricket.

“The KFC Big Bash League has been a great success for Network Ten, beating all ratings targets in years one and two,” said Ten head of sport, David Barham.  

“To have every match broadcast live around the country was a priority for 2015-16 and we are delighted that we have been able to achieve it.

“With even more high-profile players joining the competition this year, we are expecting a great summer.

“With every game played in prime-time and almost no break between finals, fans can look forward to a jam-packed season.”

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