Why The BBC USPGA Coverage Will Be Great

Stop moaning about the coverage before it's even began and embrace the fact that we've got four days of a golf major live on free to air TV

Why The BBC USPGA Coverage Will Be Great

Stop moaning about the coverage before it's even began and embrace the fact that we've got four days of a golf major live on free to air TV

Why The BBC USPGA Coverage Will Be Great

The BBC kick-starts its USPGA Championship coverage from Quail Hollow today as it prepares to show all four days of a golf major live for the first time since the 2015 Open at St Andrews.

The BBC’s deal came out of the blue during Open week and took many by surprise, not least Sky who had lost the season's final major just days after launching a dedicated golf channel.

Related: BBC USPGA Championship TV Times

However, the reception to live major golf on free-to-air TV hasn't gone down as well as I would have thought.

I was over the moon, but it seems like the whole of the UK are moaning before it's even began.

I am a Sky subscriber and yes, I think their coverage is incredible, state of the art and deserving of awards - like the BAFTA they received for last year's Open coverage at Troon.

Related: Past USPGA Champions Gallery

But I've grown up with Ken Brown, Peter Alliss and Maureen Madill on the BBC, and it's great to be able to see and hear them back broadcasting live major championship golf to the nation.

We've seen comments on our Facebook and Twitter pages like 'the BBC don't care about golf', 'they care more about athletics' etc...But if they didn't care about golf, why would they be back in the live golf game?

Everyone had begun to accept the fact that the BBC were no longer interested in our great sport, but this latest deal shows that most certainly isn't the case.

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While the coverage isn't exactly how we'd like it to be – it's on BBC iPlayer, Red Button and the BBC Sport website for the most part – it's not going to be like that every year.

Remember, we live in a digital age where most people have smart TVs, laptops, ipads etc, so it’s unlikely you’ll not be able to tune in.

It should be noted that the iPlayer and BBC Sport website feeds will be in HD.

And if you can't be in front of a screen then you can hear it on BBC Radio 5 Live with Iain Carter, who is without doubt one of sport's best broadcasters.

After the BBC broadcasted the final two days of the Masters this year, which culminated in an epic back nine battle between Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose, they must have been reminded of just how much value golf gives to both fans and broadcasters.

With golf participation figures rising this year, the next four days can only add to that momentum and bring even more people to the game.

This is a long-term investment and that's something we should all be seriously excited about.

Next year the USPGA Championship from Bellerive CC won't be clashing with the World Athletics Championship, so the golf will be on the main channel in its entirety.

And anyway, we watch the golf for what happens on the course, and we're bound to get just as much enjoyment from the BBC's coverage as we would get from Sky's.

Plus, no adverts and surely a few Ken on the Course clips!

So stop moaning, and sit back, load up the coverage in whatever 21st century way you choose and enjoy the action.

Are you excited by the BBC's UGPGA coverage or do you wish Sky still had it? Join in the conversation on the Golf Monthly Facebook and Twitter pages.

Elliott Heath
Elliott Heath

Elliott Heath is our Senior Staff Writer and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016. He graduated in Sports Journalism in 2016 and currently manages the Golf Monthly news, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Elliott has interviewed some huge names in the golf world including Sergio Garcia, Thomas Bjorn, Bernd Wiesberger and Scotty Cameron as well as a number of professionals on the DP World and PGA Tours. He has also covered three Open Championships on-site including at Carnoustie in 2018 when he was inside the ropes with Tiger Woods. He has played 31 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Old Head and Alwoodley. He currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats between 3-5. His golfing highlight is making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, and he has made one hole-in-one.


Elliott is currently playing:


Driver: Honma TR20

3 wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max

Hybrid: TaylorMade SIM Max

Irons: Mizuno MP5

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x