SportsCity was launched on 30 January 2000 …as a free-to-air sports channel over the UHF band ….and the first in the region. It promised to bring to Singapore viewers sports entertainment with all the glory and excitement. It brought live or on same day of coverage as many games from around the world. True to its promise, viewers were treated to events such as Euro2000 ‘live’, NBA finals, WWF Superstars, USPGA. Formula One World Championships, All-England Finals, Xtremesports and many more. Unfortunately within two years the channel had to close because it was not viable mainly because of the exorbitant fee for sports rights. However viewers can still enjoy sports entertainment from Starhub Cable Vision which boasts of more than five channels as well on Channel 5 and Channel NewsAsia from time to time.
“SPORTSCITY, a free-to-air sports channel launched in 2000, was not viable and had to be shut down within two years.
Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts Lee Boon Yang on Tuesday brought up the failed MediaCorp venture to explain why the idea of a free-to-air sports channel here was a non-starter.
MP Penny Low (Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC) had pitched the idea in Parliament, arguing that it was a way to cultivate the spirit of a sporting nation in the lead up to the Youth Olympics.
Dr Lee said the only way to sustain such a channel was to significantly raise radio and TV licence fees, a solution that is not in the best interest of the public.
Instead, he said the needs of the consumer were better met with commercially viable pay-TV channels.
He also assured the House that key sporting events of national significance, including the Youth Olympics, would be aired on free channels.”