The Aquatic Sports Association president Karl Izzo showed his disappointment after he revealed that the Public Broadcasting Services have not acquired the rights to broadcast the Malta waterpolo national team’s participation in the upcoming European Championship finals in Croatia.
The Malta national team will leave the islands on Wednesday ahead of their fifth successive participation in the tournament finals where they were drawn into a tough group along with tournament favourites Serbia, Germany, and Israel.
ASA president Karl Izzo told the Times of Malta that he feels angry and disappointed that the national TV station will deny the thousands of waterpolo enthusiasts on the island the opportunity to watch their national team in one of the biggest international tournaments.
“I am very angry and disappointed that our national team’s participation in a prestigious tournament such as the European Championships will not be broadcasted on the national TV station,” Izzo told the Times of Malta.
“Our waterpolo national team is one of the few in our country to be playing in such high-level competition and it is disappointing that the national station has not acquired the rights for these championships.
“It is important to point out that the costs to acquire the rights were not very expensive so it cannot be a financial reason behind this decision.
“The PBS throughout the year gives a lot of importance and coverage to major international events that feature national teams from other countries, and now that there is one competition in which the Malta national team will participate will not be transmitted on their station.”
This is the fifth successive time that the Malta waterpolo national team has qualified for the European Championship finals.
In the previous four editions, the Public Broadcasting Services had always acquired the rights of those tournaments and broadcasted not only the national teams’ matches in the competition but also screened live the final matches.
Izzo said that he feels for the hundreds of waterpolo fans in Malta who are being denied the opportunity to watch the championship on the national TV station.
“This is the first time that the PBS will not be screening live these matches,” Izzo said.
“Waterpolo is one of the most successful sports on our islands and enjoys a huge following so no doubt this decision by the Public Broadcasting Services is a huge blow to our followers who will not have the opportunity to watch the national team in these championships.”
Malta will open their commitments at the European Championships on Friday when they face Germany in the Croatian city of Zagreb.
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