Sydney – Setanta Sports, a new sports channel with significant rugby content, is set for launch in Asia this year. Setanta Sports, HQ’d in Sydney for the region, has secured rights to a number of prominent rugby union properties including the RBS Six Nations and all tournaments under the SANZAR umbrella. Setanta holds the Asian TV rights to the Six Nations for the next four seasons, including the current one; some sublicensing agreements are in place in the interim until the new channel is ready for roll-out. From January 2011, the company will have rights to SANZAR (South Africa, New Zealand, Australia Rugby) including Tri-Nations, Super 15, Air New Zealand and the Currie Cup competitions. In the northern hemisphere, Setanta have the rights to the Magners League for this season, and the Guinness Premiership from 2011. “There is a great opportunity for rugby union in Asia,” says Conor Woods, Setanta Sports’ general manager Australia and Asia. “The idea is to aggregate all the content and have one home for rugby, rather than rights spread over many different broadcasters. We want to better serve rugby fans in Asia.” Setanta currently offers an online service for Asia at www.setanta.com/i where viewers can pay to watch individual matches from the Six Nations and Magners League. Setanta Sports has suffered its share of setbacks in the UK, and currently in the US, but the broadcaster continues to fare better in its native Ireland, as well as Africa, Canada and Australia.