South Africa league signs bumper SuperSport TV deal

South Africa's top-flight league has signed a five-year television rights deal worth US$277m.

The South Africa Premier League (PSL) awarded the exclusive contract to the country's satellite channel SuperSport.

The deal, which will start from next season, puts South Africa's league among the Top 10 television rights earners in the world.

PSL boss Irvin Khoza says the comprehensive offer by SuperSport won them the rights.

"The winning tender offered a composite package that includes internet and mobile rights," Khoza said.

"We need to be clear that it wasn't just the money that influenced us but (we) looked at the growth and enhancement of our product on our current deal, where we moved from being 30th ranked league in the world to the top 10."

The deal extended an existing five-year deal for which SuperSport paid US$200m in 2007.

This season, which ends in May next year, is the last of the current agreement.

SuperSport won an acrimonious tussle with public broadcaster SABC for the rights in 2007.

But this time the cash-strapped state broadcaster's spokesman Kaizer Kganyago said it did not have the financial power to challenge for the rights.

SuperSport sub license matches to the SABC and broadcast an average of seven live matches per week.

SuperSport is part of the continent's biggest media company Naspers.