French Open Women's Final in 2003 Will Be Broadcast Live
Women's Final in 2003 Will Be Broadcast Live
By THE NEW YORK TIMES
he French Open women's final will be carried live next year, an NBC Sports spokesman said.
Today's Serena Williams-Venus Williams final will be carried at 11 a.m., Eastern, on tape, two hours after it begins in Paris. The match may still be going on when the taped version of it begins.
NBC had decided to show the women's final on tape because it did not want to encroach on its affiliates' Saturday morning children's schedule.
"The issue is with the stations," said Kevin Sullivan, a spokesman for NBC Sports. "It's their time."
The Federal Communications Commission requires that networks carry three hours of children's programs each week, and NBC shows them from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Eastern. The F.C.C. allows limited exceptions to the three-hour rule.
The Ryder Cup and Wimbledon women's final have been carried live on Saturday mornings (as have some N.B.A. playoff games that start as early as 9 a.m. Pacific) with the approval of the affiliates, which must show the children's programs at another time to meet the weekly three-hour requirement.
The affiliates approved a plan to start today's women's final three hours earlier than it was shown last year to fit a schedule that includes the Senior P.G.A. Championship and the Belmont Stakes, Sullivan said.
Fantastic, better late than never