Sports Ticker (19th Nov 2020) - COVID-19 Vaccine abuse, Amazon Prime, Payperview scheme

Published on 19 November 2020

Welcome to the latest edition of the RPC Sports Ticker - providing fortnightly bite-size updates from around the sports industry.

Access the full Sports Ticker here.

In this edition, we consider the debate around new COVID­19 vaccines and anti­doping rules, Amazon Prime’s first foray into the live broadcasting of Rugby Union and the scrapping of ‘pay­per­view’ matches by the Premier League. We also take a look at Russia’s anti­doping ban appeal and a new esports team launch by McLaren’s Lando Norris.

Might the COVID­19 vaccine inadvertently fall foul of anti­doping rules?

Concerns have been raised that new COVID­19 vaccines could be open to abuse by sports dopers.

Amazon Prime: Rugby Union's saviour?

This year, Rugby’s autumn internationals have been replaced by the Autumn Nations Cup (taking place from 13 November ­ 5 December) featuring the Six Nations plus Fiji and Georgia. Whilst many will be disappointed not to see the likes of New Zealand, Argentina and Australia in full flow, it is undoubtedly positive news that international rugby is back in the Northern Hemisphere.

CAS hears Russia's appeal against

WADA ban The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has heard Russia's appeal against its four-­year ban from international sport by WADA.

F1 driver Lando Norris launches new eSports team

McLaren's Lando Norris has announced he is launching a new esports and content creation team, titled ‘Quadrant’. The venture will see Norris team up with some of the world's top streamers across a variety of online games and categories of esports competition (including non­racing). 

Premier League to scrap pay­per­view scheme from late November

The Premier League has scrapped its pay­per­view scheme for matches until at least 2021. In October, the Premier League introduced a £14.95 ‘pay­per­view’ fee to watch games not picked as one of five televised matches each weekend. 


Extra time... 

… and finally, last Saturday’s 0 ­ 0 UEFA Nations League clash between San Marino and Gibraltar may not have set the world alight for activities on the pitch but was highly significant for other reasons that transcend football. In a historic development, the game represented the first senior men’s international with an all­female team of match officials, led by Ukrainian referee Kateryna Monzu. The news comes after the FA revealed earlier this year that the number of female referees in English football has increased by 72% since 2016 with now over 2,146 women refereeing across all levels of the sport. (See more here). Keep it coming please UEFA!