LIV Golf announces broadcast innovation, unprecedented access for global audience

LIV Golf announces broadcast innovation, unprecedented access for global audience
Phil Mickelson will tee it up at the Centurion Club in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, England. (AP Photo)
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Updated 07 June 2022

LIV Golf announces broadcast innovation, unprecedented access for global audience

LIV Golf announces broadcast innovation, unprecedented access for global audience
  • Open access streaming available on LIVGolf.com, YouTube, and Facebook, and play-by-play to be called by renowned broadcaster Arlo White
  • Experienced and versatile golf broadcaster Jerry Foltz will serve as an analyst and color commentator from the LIV Golf booth

LONDON/WEST PALM BEACH: Reinforcing its mission of growing golf and reaching new fans across the world, LIV Golf on Monday announced broadcast details and an experienced, diverse team to modernize how golf is watched. 

Beginning Thursday, June 9 at 9 a.m. EST (2 p.m. BST) complete, live coverage of LIV Golf’s historic launch at the Centurion Club will be globally available direct to consumers on LIVGolf.com, YouTube and Facebook. The LIV Golf event broadcasts will also be aired live on a global roster of leading premium and free-to-air broadcasters, providing coverage in 138 territories around the world.

LIV Golf’s shotgun start will feature the 12-team, 48-player field teeing off all at once, and more than 50 cameras will capture every moment from start to finish. The broadcast will present views from 16 different towers, drones, and mobile steady cameras, with tracer technology highlighting the action throughout the course. Fans will also hear the sport like never before through more than 60 microphones incorporated from tee to green on every hole, including player and caddie mics that will bring fans inside the competition. 

Meanwhile, on-screen graphics will showcase innovations to the viewing experience while keeping fans updated in real time on the teams and individuals leading the field. 

“The LIV Golf broadcast will be unlike anything fans have seen before,” said Will Staeger, LIV Golf chief media officer. “The innovations we are introducing to the sport will be distributed to existing and new audiences all over the world as we deliver golf coverage dedicated to entertainment and access. We’ve built a world class production team that has combined the industry’s best practices with a reimagined experience for viewers to create a one-of-a-kind broadcast. We’ve been counting down the days to Thursday’s start so fans can tune in and watch what we have been working on.”

Arlo White, the heralded voice of the Premier League in the US for nearly a decade, takes the role as lead play-by-play caller for LIV Golf. White has called matches on some of the world’s biggest stages, including the Olympics, the FIFA World Cup, UEFA Champions League, Major League Soccer, five Super Bowls and the Cricket World Cup. His global experience announcing international soccer and cricket competitions includes coverage duties for BBC Sport in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India, Pakistan and the Caribbean. White’s distinguished voice and personality have been showcased on the award-winning show “Ted Lasso,” where he serves as the voice of the popular fictional club AFC Richmond.

Experienced and versatile golf broadcaster Jerry Foltz will serve as an analyst and color commentator from the LIV Golf booth. Foltz, who played professionally for over 15 years, has spent more than two decades as an analyst, play-by-play host, studio host, instructional series host and on-course reporter for networks including the Golf Channel and NBC Sports. Over the last 13 years, Foltz has been an on-course reporter for various tours, with a focus as a leading voice for the LPGA Tour. In London, the three-person booth will be completed by Dom Boulet, a former player on the Asian Tour who is widely known throughout the region as the voice of golf. Boulet has served as a broadcaster for golf’s major championships and has helped expand coverage of marquee global golf events in international markets including the Eurasia Cup, CIMB Classic and CJ Cup.

Su-Ann Heng, a former No. 1 ranked golfer of her native Singapore and six-time member of the Singapore ladies national team, will lead on-course commentating. An experienced golf analyst with networks including FOX Sports Asia, she has covered women’s major championships and hosted marquee global events for more than seven years. The bilingual Heng has served as a contributor for Women’s Golf Magazine and has established herself as an accomplished athlete and influential voice on the global golf scene. 

The multi-talented Troy Mullins will serve as an on-course reporter and social influencer for LIV Golf. The former Women’s Long Drive Record Holder (402 yards) and a regular contributor on the Golf Channel, Mullins brings her unique and engaging storytelling skills to LIV Golf’s courses. A standout heptathlete at Cornell University where she majored in China Asia Pacific Studies, she will carry on her role as a global golf ambassador through entertaining reporting and content development that will showcase the players and personalities featured throughout the LIV Golf Invitational Series.

Staeger has assembled an award-winning team of producers responsible for some of the most renowned broadcast creations in the sports and entertainment industry to lead LIV Golf’s in-house production team. 

David Hill, former chairman of FOX Sports who has spearheaded some of the world’s biggest networks, television programs and production innovations, serves as LIV Golf’s production consultant. Senior Vice President of Global Production is James Watson, who has produced worldwide championships including the Australian Open Golf, Australian Open Tennis and ICC Cricket World Cups. Steve Beim, a nine-time Emmy award winner and one of the premiere directors in sports broadcasting serves as live event coverage director and executive producer. Beim holds more than three decades of credits directing global events including the Olympics, Indianapolis 500, Super Bowl coverage, the US Open on FOX and all six versions of “The Match” for Turner Sports. 

LIV Golf’s creative director is Will Newell, a live event specialist who has delivered promotional and on-air assets for the Olympics and major sports leagues throughout the world. Executive producer of non-live, social, short form and pre-show content is multi-Emmy award winning producer and documentarian Michael Mandt. And veteran FOX Sports executive Clark Pierce serves as head of innovation and production partnerships. The LIV Golf original music theme, to be unveiled with LIV Golf’s inaugural broadcast, was composed and produced by Scott Schreer and NJJ Music, composer and producer of the popular “NFL on FOX” theme.  

The list of global networks covering the LIV Golf Invitational Series will be made available later this week on LIVGolf.com.

LIV Golf is owned and operated by LIV Golf Investments whose vision and mission are centered around making holistic and sustainable investments to enhance the global golf ecosystem and unlock the sport’s untapped worldwide potential. 


World number two Jabeur into Wimbledon second round

World number two Jabeur into Wimbledon second round
Updated 27 June 2022

World number two Jabeur into Wimbledon second round

World number two Jabeur into Wimbledon second round
  • She will face either Rebecca Marino of Canada or Poland’s Katarzyna Kawa for a place in the last 32

LONDON: World number two Ons Jabeur eased into the Wimbledon second round on Monday with a 6-1, 6-3 win over Swedish qualifier Mirjam Bjorklund.
Jabeur, a quarter-finalist in 2021 and fresh from the grass-court title in Berlin, will face either Rebecca Marino of Canada or Poland’s Katarzyna Kawa for a place in the last 32.


2022 AFC U-23 Asian Cup, women’s team triumphs highlight Saudi football progress

2022 AFC U-23 Asian Cup, women’s team triumphs highlight Saudi football progress
Saudi Arabia recently won the 2022 AFC U-23 Asian Cup in Uzbekistan. (SAFF)
Updated 27 June 2022

2022 AFC U-23 Asian Cup, women’s team triumphs highlight Saudi football progress

2022 AFC U-23 Asian Cup, women’s team triumphs highlight Saudi football progress
  • The Young Falcons won the Kingdom’s debut U-23 Asian Cup title
  • Saudi women’s team took second pace in the WAFF Futsal Championship

RIYADH: The triumph of the Young Falcons at the 2022 AFC U-23 Asian Cup and the recent successes of the women’s national team has marked yet more milestones for Saudi Arabian football this year, after the senior team qualified for the World Cup in Qatar and the Kingdom’s clubs rack up great results in continental competitions.

Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF) President Yasser Al-Misehal said: “The success of the Saudi national teams demonstrates that our strategy is yielding positive results. Bringing back to the Kingdom the AFC U-23 Asian Cup for the first time ever with our very own Saudi national coach, Saad Al-Shehri, is a source of great pride and satisfaction.

“The players who achieved this great feat will be part of the main drivers of the success of our National Team going forward.”

He added: “This gives us greater confidence and trust in our younger generation, beside the achievements we had this year for both men’s and women’s football. We are working on developing a pathway tailored for every up-and-coming Saudi footballer on the grassroots level.

“We are working on extending a very large pool of Saudi talent with the support needed for the upcoming generations of Saudi football to match the highest professional levels of the game, be it in the technical and tactical aspects of the game, as well as the dietary, psychological, physical and athletic aspects.”

The U-23 victory comes soon after the senior Green Falcons team qualified for their sixth World Cup participation ahead of this year’s tournament in Qatar. Herve Renard’s team topped their qualification group, which featured continental giants such as Japan and Australia.

The Saudi Pro League continues to grow in quality and importance at the Asian level, with Al-Hilal currently the holders of the AFC Champions League title. This year, three Saudi teams are set to feature in the competition’s round of 16, with Al-Hilal, Al-Shabab and Al-Faisaly having topped their respective groups in the first round.

Earlier this month, the Saudi Futsal National Team also grabbed the silver medal in the West Asian Football Federation’s Futsal Championship. The Green Falcons demonstrated incredible quality throughout the tournament, before narrowly losing 5-3 to hosts Kuwait in the final. The team continued their fine run of form on the road reaching the quarterfinals in the Futsal Arab Cup taking place in Dammam following a thrilling 3-2 encounter against Iraq that ended their campaign.

Saudi women have also enjoyed their fair share of success in football this year. In February, the newly launched Saudi Women’s National Team played its first ever official games against the Seychelles and the Maldives, winning both games with the same 2-0 result. 

The Kingdom concluded their successful hosting of the 2022 West Asian Football Federation’s Women’s Futsal Championship in Jeddah, where the Saudi Women’s Futsal National Team made its debut in the competition and claimed a silver medal following a 4-2 defeat in the final against Iraq.


WWE RAW to mark 20th anniversary of John Cena’s debut

WWE RAW to mark 20th anniversary of John Cena’s debut
Updated 27 June 2022

WWE RAW to mark 20th anniversary of John Cena’s debut

WWE RAW to mark 20th anniversary of John Cena’s debut
  • June 2022 had been dedicated to the legendary wrestler’s arrival on SmackDown two decades ago

RIYADH: Twenty years on from John Cena’s arrival on SmackDown, the legendary wrestler makes an appearance on RAW tonight, the highlight of the WWE’s month-long celebration of his career.

Cena has since those early days become a household name in the WWE, and is widely regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time. The WWE had dedicated the month of June 2022 to the performer.

While his return opponent is yet to be announced, the WWE Universe is in for an action-packed edition of the red brand as Cena steps into the ring for a landmark match tonight.

A joint-record 16-time world champion, Cena has won the WWE Championship 13 times which is also a record. He is also a five-time US Champion, a four-time world tag team champion, a two-time Royal Rumble match winner, a one-time Money in the Bank victor, and has headlined many major WWE events, including WrestleMania five times.

His first US title win was in New York’s Madison Square Garden, opening the 20th edition of WrestleMania in 2004, and delivering two “Attitude Adjustments” to the “Big Show” Paul White. That moment solidified his status as a rising attraction for the promotion.

A year later at WrestleMania 21 Cena would challenge John Bradshaw Layfield (JBL) for the main event which marked the first world championship win for “The Champ.” His “I Quit” match against the former champion at Judgement Day in 2005 is still considered a classic.

The main event of WrestleMania 22 in 2006 saw John Cena beat “The Game” Triple H clean in the middle of the ring to retain his title. One year later WrestleMania 23 featured the now dominant WWE champion rise against D-Generation X counterpart and one of the greatest wrestlers of all time — “Mr. WrestleMania” Shawn Michaels.

The Royal Rumble is one of the biggest events on the WWE calendar, and Cena has been involved in many epic showdowns in that event, prevailing in 2008 and 2013 as the winner.

Many fans consider Edge to be Cena’s fiercest rival and their feud certainly elevated both men to new heights. Edge memorably cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase on a wounded Cena at New Year’s Revolution 2006 for his first WWE Championship win. Edge and Cena’s rivalry saw the two battle over the WWE Championship for the majority of 2006, and over the World Heavyweight Title in 2009. Their matches captivated WWE audiences, and both superstars have an outstanding 27 World Titles between them.

Cena has also crossed paths with Randy Orton numerous times in his career. During the 2000s the two were believed to be the top stars in the WWE. Between their first match in November 2005 and their last match in February of 2017, Cena and Orton faced each other 22 times in televised matches. The record between the two men is 13-7 in favor of Cena.

Cena faced the Rock for the first time at WrestleMania 28 in what was billed as a “Once In A Lifetime” match. The Rock defeated Cena in a 30-minute classic, but a year later Cena shocked the world at WrestleMania 29 by defeating the Rock for the WWE Championship.

Cena is also a winner of the Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award for 2018.


Al-Hilal on brink of another league title as they host Al-Faisaly

Al-Hilal on brink of another league title as they host Al-Faisaly
It will also be the third consecutive title for the reigning Saudi and Asian champions. (File/AFP)
Updated 27 June 2022

Al-Hilal on brink of another league title as they host Al-Faisaly

Al-Hilal on brink of another league title as they host Al-Faisaly
  • The reigning Saudi and Asian champions need to match Al-Ittihad’s result against Al-Batin to secure a record 18th championship

DUBAI: Al-Hilal take on Al-Faisaly on Monday night at King Fahd International Stadium knowing that if they match Al-Ittihad’s result against Al-Batin, they will be crowned Saudi Pro League champions for a record 18th time.

It will also be the third consecutive title for the reigning Saudi and Asian champions.

The Riyadh giants trailed Al-Ittihad by 16 points earlier in the campaign but a remarkable run of form in the second half of the season now sees them lead the SPL table on goal difference. A win tonight will guarantee the title, regardless of what the team from Jeddah, who have suffered a late loss of form and nerve, does.

Although Al-Hilal are strong favorites to defeat Al-Faisaly and claim the league title, Argentine coach Ramon Diaz will warn against any complacency, particularly as he will be missing the services of defenders Ali Al-Bulaihi and Jang Hyun-soo.

History suggests, however, that Al-Hilal’s fans will be celebrating tonight, having seen their team defeat Al-Faisaly 17 times in their 23 meetings, with the other six ending in draws.

Meanwhile, Al-Faisaly, in 11th place, go into the match still unsure of whether they will be playing top tier football next season, an indication of just how many clubs are still fighting relegation as the season comes to a close.

Having played 12 consecutive seasons in the Saudi Pro League, Al-Faisaly are flirting with the drop going into the last day, as they did in the 2016-17 season.


Morocco and Iraq to meet in 2022 Arab Futsal Cup final

Morocco and Iraq to meet in 2022 Arab Futsal Cup final
Updated 27 June 2022

Morocco and Iraq to meet in 2022 Arab Futsal Cup final

Morocco and Iraq to meet in 2022 Arab Futsal Cup final
  • Victories over Egypt and Kuwait see the reigning champions and Iraq face off at the Green Hall in Dammam on Tuesday

DUBAI: Morocco and Iraq will meet in Tuesday’s final of the 2022 Arab Futsal Cup after successfully navigating their last-four clashes against Egypt and Kuwait respectively on Sunday night at the Green Hall in Dammam.

Morocco, who had beaten Libya in Friday’s quarterfinal, defeated Egypt 5-2 in their all-African clash, while Iraq — conquerors of hosts Saudi Arabia in the last eight — overcame Kuwait 2-1 in the other semifinal.

The 10-team tournament, organized by the Union of Arab Football Associations and hosted by the Saudi Arabian Football Federation, kicked off on July 20, and is the sixth edition of the competition.

Previous winners include Egypt in 1998 and 2005, and Libya in 2007.