Emma Raducanu’s US Open final against Leylah Fernandez will be aired live for free on Channel 4 after the broadcaster agreed a last-minute deal with Amazon Prime.
The 18-year-old is the first British woman to reach a Grand Slam singles final since Virginia Wade, who played at Wimbledon, in 1977.
Amazon Prime Video had exclusive broadcasting rights in the UK to streaming the hotly anticipated final prior to the deal with Channel 4 which is reportedly worth seven figures according to The Times.
According to reports fees from the agreement will be reinvested by Amazon into British women’s tennis to fund the future generations of female British talent.
“Emma’s journey from qualification through to the US Open final at the age of 18 is a truly magical story for British sport and we think it’s important that we extend our coverage to as many people as possible to support her in this historic moment for women’s tennis,” Alex Green, managing director of Prime Video sport europe, told The Times.
Channel 4’s chief content officer Ian Katz, in a statement, said the broadcaster secured the deal late on Friday night, adding that “so many people have gone above and beyond to make it happen.”
Sports fans were pleasantly surprised by Channel 4 earlier in the year too when it broadcast live coverage of England’s Test series against India in what was the first time live Test cricket was free to air television since 2005.
“Emma’s meteoric rise to secure a place in the US Open Final is just sensational,” said Katz.
“We’re glad to have worked with Prime Video and pulled out all the stops to get it on air,” continued Katz, “and I’m sure viewers will be thrilled at the prospect of watching Emma in this Grand Slam final.”
Raducanu’s historic final against 19-year-old Fernandez will air at 8pm today.