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BAMMA lands new TV deal with Dave



British MMA promotion BAMMA has a shiny new TV deal that will bring the sport of mixed martial arts to homes across the UK and Ireland at local prime time.

BAMMA has struck a broadcasting partnership deal with UKTV entertainment channel Dace, with the deal kicking off with live and exclusive coverage of BAMMA 29, which takes place at the Genting Arena in Birmingham on May 12.

MMA presenter Andy Shepherd will anchor the live broadcast, with former WBA heavyweight boxing champion David Haye alongside him as Dave’s guest pundit. Former UFC flyweight favourite Paddy Holohan will also form part of the Dave broadcast team.

The main card of the event will be shown live, with the broadcast airing from 9pm-11pm on Friday May 12.

The acquisition of BAMMA by Dave sees live mixed martial arts join the channel’s growing stable of sports, following last year’s live coverage of boxing, cricket and darts events. The channel has also secured the rights to the new-format Tie Break Tens tennis tournament later this month.

Richard Watsham, director of commissioning UKTV, said: “BAMMA events are of the very best quality in terms of both sporting spectacle and sheer adrenaline,” said UKTV’s director of commissioning Richard Watsham.

“Given the further growth in popularity of MMA and Dave’s continued presence in free-to-air sport, there’s an excellent opportunity to build on the existing fanbase and introduce new viewers to this highly skilled sport.”

Dave general manager Steve North, said: “Mixed martial arts is growing in popularity and appeals to a young and highly engaged audience, which is perfect for Dave.

“David Haye is a familiar face for Dave viewers after we showed his comeback fight last year and we’re delighted to have him back for BAMMA 29.”

And BAMMA CEO David Green, added: “We are delighted to be partnering with Dave and to continue bringing MMA fans the very best in British Mixed Martial Arts.

“MMA is one of the most exciting live sports in the world and fans now get the opportunity to watch all the BAMMA action on one of the UK’s best loved channels.”

Freelance sports writer and MMA reporter with 19 years’ experience in the UK's national media covering major sporting events including UFC world title fights, Olympic Games, FIFA World Cup, UEFA European Championships, Grand National and the FA Cup Final.