Mumbai: Streaming service, Prime Video, amps up the excitement around the Indian cricket team's tour of New Zealand beginning 18 November, with a series of announcements. In a first for Prime Video India, the service will show advertisements during live cricket matches. It has signed up Airtel Xstream Fiber as the presenting sponsor, and MPL, Nescafé, Noise, OLX Autos, and Vida have come on board as associate sponsors. Meanwhile, brands including AMFI and DBS join as advertisers.
This move will help brands reach Prime Video’s premium base of highly engaged customers spread across the country.
India and New Zealand both reached the semi-finals of the Twenty20 World Cup in Australia but lost their matches. They will now play a limited-overs series consisting of three T20s and three ODIs between 18 and 30 November. Prime Video is the official India territory rights holder to exclusively stream all men’s and women’s cricket matches played in New Zealand.
Prime Video India director of SVoD business Sushant Sreeram said, "There are many things that are heterogeneous about the delightfully diverse India when it comes to entertainment—be it choice of language, genres of shows and movies, devices that customers prefer watching their favourite entertainment on, and so much more. But there is one absolute unifier that everyone across the country is unanimously passionate about, and that’s cricket! With our slate of compelling shows and movies over the last six years, we have strived to super-serve our customers, and they have emphatically picked Prime Video as their most loved entertainment destination. Now, with live cricket made immersive and accessible through multi-language feeds, fantastic studio programming, and a superb set of commentators to guide us through the series, we are confident that we will not only deliver a superior experience for the country's legions of cricket fans, but also make Prime Video the first choice of entertainment for everyone."
"India and New Zealand have both been at the top of their white ball games in the recent past, and we expect some explosive cricket in the coming weeks from two of the best teams in the world as the cricketing action now moves from Australia to New Zealand," he added.
Prime Video will deliver live commentary and match-programming in English, Hindi, Tamil, Kannada, and Telugu. Fans will also be treated to graphics in these languages. Former captains and cricketers like Ravi Shastri, Zaheer Khan, Ashish Nehra, Gundappa Viswanath, Anjum Chopra, and Venkatpathy Raju, among others, will be bringing the matches alive with their insightful commentary in different languages as India tries to set the record straight against New Zealand. The BlackCaps knocked the Men in Blue out of the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup and also defeated India in the inaugural World Test Championship final in 2021.
The full slate of commentators for the series includes the following names:
English: Ravi Shastri, Harsha Bhogle, Anjum Chopra, Simon Doull, and Murali Kartik. Gaurav Kapoor will be the presenter.
Hindi: Zaheer Khan, Ashish Nehra, Ajay Jadeja, Mohammad Kaif, and Ajit Agarkar.
Tamil: WV Raman, Hemang Badani, L Sivaramakrishnan, and S Sriram.
Kannada: Gundappa Viswanath, Veda Krishnamurthy, Shankar Prakash, Venkatesh Prasad, and K Jeshwant.
Telugu: Venkatpathy Raju, Sunitha Anand, Sudhir Malwvedi, and Vijay Malwvedi.
The cricket experience for the fans doesn’t stop here. Prime Video will also offer an English-language live one-hour pre-show before each game. The mid-innings break will feature a 15-minute show that will be a recap of the first inning and a preview of the second. The live programming also involves a 30-minute post-match presentation and analysis by Prime Video’s stable of cricket experts.
Curating a new viewing experience for live sports, Prime Video will offer customers new features like an in-game language selector and "Rapid Recap." The in-game language selector will allow customers to change languages (e.g., from English to Hindi) seamlessly without exiting the player. Customers joining a game in progress can catch-up on impactful game highlights using the "Rapid Recap" feature before transitioning to the live stream automatically.
To watch the matches, consumers can go to the Prime Video app on their respective devices, where they will be able to find the live match featured on the home page. On Android and Smart TV devices, they can select the Cricket tab in the top navigation. The Cricket section's landing page will include live matches as well as full replays of previous matches. Consumers can choose a language stream of their choice to enjoy the match. The page will also feature the key highlights of the matches—Super Sixes and short highlights—for a quick catch-up. Fans can stream these matches online through their web browser, mobile devices, internet-connected TVs, set-top boxes, Fire TV sticks, and other compatible devices.