ESPN Australia

ESPN Australia

ESPN logo
Launched 19 September 1995 (Optus TV)
April 1999 (Austar)
September 2002 (Foxtel)
Network ESPN
Picture format 576i (SDTV)
720p (HDTV)
Audience share (In Australia)
0.1% (April 2008, [1])
Slogan The Worldwide Leader in Sports
Country Australia
Language English
Broadcast area Australia
New Zealand
Pacific Islands
Papua New Guinea
Formerly called Sports ESPN
Sister channel(s) ESPN2
Foxtel Channel 508 (HD)
Channel 1508 (SD)
SKY TV Channel 61 (SD)
Channel 861 (HD)
Foxtel Channel 508 (HD)
Channel 1508 (SD)
Optus TV Channel 508 (SD)
Neighbourhood Cable Channel 18 (SD)
TransACT Channel 351 (SD)
Vodafone TV Channel 61 (SD)
Channel 861 (HD)
Foxtel Play Channel 508 (HD)
Fetch TV (Australia) Channel 115 (HD)

ESPN Australia is a 24-hour sports channel offered in Australia and New Zealand.

Initially, ESPN was known as Sports ESPN on the Optus Vision cable television system, and focused on sports aired by its home network in the United States, including American football, baseball, and basketball. In order to expand its local reach, it has shown an increasing amount of football games including La Liga (now on beIN Sports), UEFA Champions League (shared with SBS), World Cup qualifying games, and Major League Soccer. Also on the network schedule are rugby matches and Cricket matches.

ESPN Australia has also commenced showing locally produced content including Australian versions of PTI and SportsCenter. They also air a soccer discussion show Monday to Friday called ESPNsoccernet PressPass which is hosted by Andrew Orsatti.

On 1 March 2011 ESPN2 launched in Australia both in standard and high definition formats.


It became available on Austar in April 1999,[2] and Foxtel in September 2002.[3]

The broadcast of Jarryd Hayne's debut for the San Francisco 49ers in the National Football League on 15 September 2015 drew the network's highest ever audience with 116,000 viewers watching the game live, beating the previous audience record of 107,100 viewers for Super Bowl XLVIII in 2014.[4]


The following is the list of sports programming shown on the ESPN network (with some being shown only on ESPN and not ESPN2, and vice versa).[5]


American Football





Ice Hockey

Motor Racing

Rugby Union




X Games

Other programming

News and talk shows


ESPN HD was one of the first five channels to be available in HD when Foxtel HD+ launched. ESPN HD commenced in June 2008. The SD version of ESPN began broadcasting in widescreen on 25 January 2010. On 2 June 2011 ESPN HD (the HD simulcast) and launched in New Zealand on Sky.[9]


ESPN 3D launched in Australia on the 30th, July 2010. The channel launched to show 8 hours of the X Games 16 live in 3D. ESPN 3D is currently only available in the U.S. and Australia via Foxtel IQ2 and Austar MyStar HD.[10] Foxtel 3D launched on 1 November 2010 which shows all of ESPN 3D's content - with ESPN 3D no longer having its own channel. Since the launch of Foxtel 3D, Austar has not had access to 3D content from ESPN, with it unknown if Austar will offer Foxtel 3D any time in the near future.


  1. Ratings Week 16 (13/04/2008 - 19/04/2008)
  2. Joyce, James (26 March 1999). "Friday Guide / Tunedin". Newcastle Herald. p. 6. Retrieved 3 May 2010.
  3. Schulze, Jane (2 September 2002). "Seven prepares for spat over sport". The Australian. p. 32.
  4. "Jarryd Hayne's debut for San Francisco 49ers helps swell ESPN audience to record levels". Mumbrella. 16 September 2015. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
  5. "" (PDF). ESPN. Retrieved 2011-12-21.
  6. Pierik, Jon (18 September 2014). "Channels kick for NFL touchdown on Australian TV". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 22 September 2014.
  7. Costello, Kerryn (3 February 2014). "Championship Series to air live on ESPN". Little League. Retrieved 7 February 2015.
  8. "2015 ABLCS to be live on ESPN Aus/NZ". 26 January 2015. Retrieved 7 February 2015.
  9. Duffy, Louise. "ESPN launches ESPN HD and ESPN3 in NZ". Rapid News TV. Retrieved 2 June 2011.
  10. Laughlin, Andrew. "ESPN to run 3D broadcast in Australia". Digital Spy. Retrieved 30 July 2010.

External links

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