Cricket fans in the US will be able to watch the semifinal and final matches of this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket tournament live on YouTube this week thanks to a multi-year agreement signed in January.
Previously US fans had to sign up for subscription-based online sports site Willow.tv and pay $60 to stream the games in real time if they wanted to view the action live.
This is the first time YouTube will offer live streaming of the event. However, as a concession to conflicting pay-TV rights, it must present the games to viewers in the US “time-looped”, about 15 minutes after each game ends.
The games will be streamed on YouTube’s IPL channel at youtube.com/ipl. Fans can also replay archived videos of the games.
With cricket becoming more popular in the US, the IPL channel on the video-sharing site has received more than 40 million views, with the US second only to India in total views, YouTube said.
The first semi-final of the IPL, which features the world’s top players in eight teams, is Wednesday.
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