The first Test between Australia and New Zealand dominated the weekend TV ratings, and with the next Test kicking off on Boxing Day, there’s every reason to believe that audience will grow even larger. Here’s how you can watch on this traditional sporting holiday, whether at home, visiting with family or travelling about.
Australia vs New Zealand 1st Test TV Ratings
We’ve always loved our cricket here in Australia, and the arrival of summer signals the start of another season of the great game’s most time-honoured format, the test match. This year, it’s New Zealand’s outstanding test players putting themselves up against a revitalised Aussie team – and in a way, the three tests this summer are a sample of what the 2019 Cricket World Cup final could have been. New Zealand’s Black Caps had won out over India to book a place in the final, and Australia almost joined them – but lost to a determined England, who went on to take the final and the cup.
So it’s not surprising that the first test of this season got a lot of attention from fans eager to see their trans-Tasman neighbours meet on the pitch once more. But nobody could have predicted just how popular the live TV coverage – broadcast on Seven’s main channel in prime time thanks to the first test’s day/night format – would be. The match’s first three days attracted around 670,000 viewers on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday – and then came in as the 2nd highest rated TV show in the competitive Sunday night slot, with a phenomenal 774,000 viewers. It was beaten only by Seven News – which was broadcast during a break in the cricket on the same channel. It’s official – Aussie fans still love their test cricket!
Australia chalked up a convincing victory in that first test, setting the scene for what promises to be an epic encounter on Boxing Day.
Must See Cricket TV: The Boxing Day Test
As every cricket fan knows, the Boxing Day test is one of the great traditions of sport. Played on the hallowed turf of the MCG, the Boxing Day test has been an annual tradition for nearly forty years. New Zealand has played the Boxing Day test only twice – most recently all the way back in 1987 – and both those tests ended in a draw.
This time, though, with Australia having chalked up a win in the first test of the series, New Zealand will be wanting to get a win of their own on the board to stand a chance of winning the series. And while some may think the home ground advantage might come into play, nothing is ever certain in cricket (Australia has won the majority of Boxing Day tests, but lost last year to a dominant Indian side).
So what we’ve got coming up here is the test match fans have been waiting for, at the perfect time of the year for cricket viewing and with the Australian team in peak form – their disappointment at missing out on the World Cup final a distant memory.
With comprehensive coverage of every ball of the Boxing Day test available to all, it’s time to make space on your favourite couch and settle in to enjoy the game. And these days, cricket fans have plenty of choice when it comes to finding ways to watch the match. Whether you watch a broadcast at home or a live stream on the go, there are options to suit everyone.
Where to Watch or Stream the Boxing Day Test Live
Thanks to Australia’s “anti-siphoning” laws making sure that Australia’s test matches remain free to watch, the Boxing Day test is one of the easiest sporting events to get high-quality coverage of. And thanks to the rapid take-up of streaming video, along with fast 4G and 5G mobile services, you’ll be able to watch the match even if you’re out and about as well.
|Thu 26 Dec – Mon 30 Dec||LIVE: Boxing Day Test||10.30am||Seven / Foxtel / Kayo|
The Boxing Day Test Live on Free to Air
Top of the list for many – if the first test’s ratings are anything to go by – will be the Boxing Day free to air coverage on the Seven Network. Exactly which of Seven’s channels will be used to broadcast the Boxing Day Test will depend on which state you live in, but we would expect most states to get their coverage on the main Seven channel, with a high definition broadcast available on channel 70. The trade-off for the coverage being free is, of course, ad breaks after every over – though they’re almost a tradition in themselves! Note that Seven’s catch-up streaming service 7plus will not be streaming the Boxing Day test – if you want to stream, you’ll need to opt for one of the subscription options.
Boxing Day Test Live on Foxtel and Foxtel Now
The obvious choice for sports of all kinds for millions of people is Foxtel, and with their dedicated Fox Cricket channel, you’ll be able to watch the same high-quality coverage seen on Seven, but without the annoyance of commercial breaks every six balls. Of course, Fox Sports has their own team on hand to provide insight and analysis, including shows like The Big Break featuring some of Australia’s cricket greats like Shane Warne, Adam Gilchrist and Mark Waugh. And if you’ve got a 4K-capable TV and Foxtel’s iQ4 box, you can head over the new Fox Sports Ultra HD channel to take in the Test in stunning 4K detail.
For watching online, Foxtel Now is a great solution – offering affordable streaming of Foxtel’s channels on both TVs and mobile devices. A free 10 day trial is available, which can be a great way to instantly watch the Boxing Day Test involving Australia vs New Zealand online. And Foxtel’s satellite and cable customers can stream while out and about for free, using the Foxtel Go app on phones and tablets.
Boxing Day Test Live on Kayo Sports
And then there’s the high-tech streaming option – Kayo Sports. Boasting a slick, sports-focused interface and all the resources of the Fox Sports team, Kayo will be streaming the Boxing Day test complete with its unique range of special features. You’ll be able to stream “as live” if you come in late, even while the match is in progress. Live stats keep you up to speed with the action, Key Moments let you relive the crucial parts of the day’s play, and Split View lets you watch multiple sports at once.
Since Kayo is affiliated with Fox Sports, their Boxing Day Test programming and coverage are identical to what’s available on the Fox Cricket channel. Kayo Sports requires no equipment or set-up fees, and there’s also a free 14 day trial that offers instant access to every sport that’s currently airing in the Kayo TV guide. Kayo is available across a variety of mobile and internet connected devices, including select PC and Macs, iOS and Android phones and tablets, Apple and Telstra TV, the Google Chromecast, as well as Safari, Firefox, Chrome and Microsoft Edge browsers, with plans to expand in the future.
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Boxing Day Test and Live Sport TV Schedule
No matter which method you choose to watch the Boxing Day test, you’ll want to be ready to watch from the first ball. Starting on Boxing Day and continuing through to Monday December 30th, play starts at 11am Sydney time each day, with stumps around 6pm. In other states you’ll need to adjust those times accordingly, with Perth viewers needing to be up and in front of the TV by 8am to catch the first bat.
And the Boxing Day Test isn’t the only game in town on what’s become one of the biggest days on the calendar for sports of all persuasions. On the same day, the world-famous Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race sets sail at 1pm, while just after the first day of the Test in Melbourne, South Africa and England commence their first Cricket Test from the Centurion at around 7pm Sydney time. Fox Cricket picks up coverage of that test at 10.30pm, but Kayo Sports should be streaming the full session – one of the great things about a service that doesn’t rely on channel schedules.
The reason for the later cross to the South Africa test on Fox Cricket is their live coverage of the Perth Scorchers vs the Sydney Sixers in the Big Bash League, which will also be streaming on Kayo.
And if you’re looking for something more fast-paced, basketball fans can watch the NBA all day live on Foxtel and Kayo, then Melbourne United vs the Cairns Taipans in the NBL’s Boxing Day evening match.
|Sailing: Sydney to Hobart||1.00pm||Seven|
|Cricket: Australia v New Zealand Second Test||11.00am||Foxtel / Kayo / Seven|
|Cricket: South Africa v England First Test||10.30pm||Foxtel / Kayo|
|NBA: Celtics @ Raptors||4.00am||Foxtel / Kayo|
|NBA: Bucks @ 76ers||6.30am||Foxtel / Kayo|
|NBA: Rockets @ Warriors||9.00am||Foxtel / Kayo|
|NBA: Clippers @ Lakers||12.00pm||Foxtel / Kayo|
|NBA: Pelicans @ Nuggets||2.30pm||Foxtel / Kayo|
|BBL: Perth Scorchers v Sydney Sixers||7.10pm||Foxtel / Kayo / Seven|
|NBL: Melbourne United v Cairns Taipans||7.30pm||Foxtel / Kayo|