Astro announced selected matches of the upcoming season of the Netball Super League (NSL) would be shown outside Malaysia via W-Sport.
The women’s sports-centric channel, offering live content such as Germany's Frauen Bundesliga, USA's National Women's Soccer League and Hopman Cup, is available in various countries and regions including Indonesia, Belgium, Netherlands, Portugal and the Middle East.
The international broadcasting arrangement was a testament to the growing popularity of the Malaysian professional netball league organised by Astro in partnership with the Malaysian Netball Association.
“For the first time, NSL will enter global markets as selected matches will be broadcast on W-Sports with English commentary,” said Nicholas John, Astro’s Head of Sports.
”The channel focuses on women’s sports content and is available in 30 countries. Although NSL’s journey has just started and is still a long way to go, I have confidence in this prestigious league becoming a phenomena that local and international fans will always look forward to.”
The arrival of new foreign players, on top of having a positive impact on the league’s quality, should also help attract the viewing interest of international netball fans.
The 2023 season is set to feature 11 foreign players from seven countries, namely Uganda, South Africa, Singapore, United Kingdom, Thailand, Brunei and Sri Lanka.
Malaysian Netball Association president Alwiyah Talib said: “Last season there were only two foreign players who played for [defending champions] Johor Jewels, but now we have the likes of KL Wildcats, Putrajaya Dynamites, Perak Phoenix and Negeri Sembilan Venom in the mix.
“Besides that, there have been big roster changes for all teams especially [2021 winners] KL Wildcats, and the two new teams, Terengganu Marvels and Putrajaya Dynamites, cannot be underestimated because they have star players who can provide stiff competition.”
The new season is scheduled to tip off on October 13 at the Juara Stadium in Kuala Lumpur, and conclude on November 5.