Zach Johnson won the 2015 British Open
Next year’s British Open will be on Sky for the first time after the BBC asked to be released from their contract one year earlier than planned.
Sky had been in line to take over live coverage of the Major from 2017 but following a request from the BBC to leave their committment early, the R & A have agreed and after discussions with the pay TV giant, they have handed the reins over to Sky one year early.
“We are looking forward to world-class coverage of The Open from our partners at Sky Sports and are grateful that they have stepped in a year early,” said Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, in a statement.
“It is sad to see the BBC’s live coverage of The Open end and I know some fans will be disappointed. The relationship between The R&A and the BBC spans more than 60 years and we understand the challenging circumstances that the BBC is currently presented with,” he continued. “I know the BBC will produce compelling highlights, which will be enjoyed by a large prime-time audience.
"We are committed to delivering a spectacular edition of The Open next year at Royal Troon and working with both Sky Sports and the BBC we will ensure compelling coverage for millions of fans throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland."
The BBC will continue to have a highlights programme and full radio coverage of the event.