Neo Sports is poised to narrow the bridge between cricket and entertainment by announcing a bouquet of nine cricket-based shows. These shows would commence with the upcoming Future Cup and the India-South Africa Test series. The shows would be launched over the next one month, with the first show going on air on March 24.
The nine shows being launched by the channel are ‘Dial C for Cricket’, ‘Sports Zone’, ‘Tour Diary’, ‘Cricket Tadka Marke’, ‘Baat and Bowl’, ‘Encounter’, ‘Ballebaaz’, ‘Jaya He’, and ‘The Great Indian Run Chase’.
Commenting on the new shows, Mautik Tolia, Head of Programming, Neo Sports Broadcast Pvt Ltd, said, “Neo Sports has established itself as a premium cricket-based channel since launch. Extensive consumer research has revealed that beyond the core diet of live matches, there is a huge entertainment need gap existing among cricket viewers that we intend to cater to. Cricket has become much more than just a game and is a part of the socio-cultural fabric that binds us together. Hence, we are coming out with a plethora of shows encapsulating the various facets of the game. These are shows that will cater to all the entertainment and information needs of a cricket fan from on the field to behind the scenes.”
Neo Sports will air shows that will engage the viewer on a larger level with the sport. ‘Dial C forCricket’ is a viewer-centric interactive show, wherein viewers can call in to discuss the various issues of the game, player performances, match conditions, etc. This show has been inspired by the blogging culture and will be positioned as ‘your cricket blog on TV’.
‘Baat and Bowl’, which would be hosted by Vineet Malhotra, would take viewers up close and personal with their cricket idols. The show would have informal interviews with the stalwarts of the game, off the field and in the studio.
‘Sports Zone’ gives viewers their daily dose of sports updates.
Besides these shows, Neo Sports has also woven the lighter side of the sport into the shows. The channel’s anchor Archana Vijaya would bring the fun aspect of the game and also give viewers a sneak peek into behind the scenes happenings of the teams. ‘Tour Diary’ would have Vijaya
following the teams at different venues across the country and cover the excitement at the stadiums, her interactions with cricketers, fans, etc.
‘Cricket Tadka Marke’ would dish out the sport with a dash of spice. This show focuses on crazy fans, gossip about cricketers, fun trivia and other happenings in the world of cricket. The Cricket-Bollywood connection would be exposed here.
‘Encounter’ is about the greatest encounters in the history of cricket. These are classic matches, threaded with a theme, filled with insights, dramatisations, and anecdotes and behind the scenes drama.
‘Ballebaaz’ showcases various performances of Indian batsmen peppered with a filmy twist. ‘Extra Cover’ will give an insight on the finer nuances of the game as well cover the fun aspect of it. The studio segment of ‘Extra Cover’ would be hosted by Radhakrishnan Sreenivasan, who will give viewers the latest updates, previews, reviews, statistics and expert opinions. Former Indian cricketer Mohinder Amarnath and former South African Test cricketer Peter Kirsten would also be part of the show as guest panelists for the upcoming series against South Africa.
With the launch of these new shows, Neo Sports plans to give cricket a 360-degree turnaround by providing wholesome cricket entertainment to viewers.