Cricket is no longer a dirty word in Australia after leading sports broadcasters Seven West Media and Fox Sports agreed to a record $1.2 billion, six-year media deal with Cricket Australia last Thursday night.
For the first time in what must seem a lifetime, CA chief executive James Sutherland sat in the hot seat of a press conference with some good news for cricket fans.
His organisation's record deal with Seven ($450 million) and Foxtel ($630 million), on the back of the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa that outraged cricket fans and sponsors alike, should be applauded, with Nine effectively walking after more than 40 years covering a sport long-time mogul Kerry Packer helped grow around the world.
Nine shocked industry insiders when it pinched the Australian Open TV rights off Seven two weeks ago with a $300 million bid, one that now makes sense if it saw cracks in its pitch for the new cricket rights.
Awkwardly, Nine will still have to assemble something resembling a respected cricket commentary team as it holds the rights to the next Ashes series in England and the ODI World Cup in Britain, both in mid-2019, and the T20 World Cups in Australia in 2020.
After growing the Big Bash into a summer spectacle with its fresh and creative coverage, Network Ten have also been clean bowled, with a last-minute pitch for the TV rights failing against Foxtel's bid.
The network has now been left with a gaping hole in its sports programming - the one industry where audiences tend to stay loyal, giving major sponsors, advertisers and the network itself added security.
The grim reality Ten now faces is poorer ratings from its reality TV shows; Ten snapped up the previous BBL for just $100 million over five years, growing its average audience to 1.14 million and turning shows like I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, which aired straight after BBL games, into ratings gold.
How these programs the network has banked on now fare is anyone's guess ... but new American owner CBS will be starting its reign well behind the eight ball with sponsors and viewers.
Like Nine, who revolutionised how Test cricket was broadcast and adjudicated with its groundbreaking technology and coverage, executives at both networks will feel robbed, with Seven and Foxtel set to reap the benefits.
WA cricket viewers shouldn't though: the major broadcaster of our true national game has its roots in the west, while its rising star Basil Zempilas also hails from WA.
Seven's cricket coup creates one of those "good headache to have" cliches we always hear in football, with a long summer of sports to broadcast live, including the summer of cricket (minus headliners Steve Smith and Dave Warner) and the Australian Open tennis, plus its lead-in tournaments, while Nine and Ten will hardly raise a finger.
That means a sizzling summer for Zempilas, back in Perth this week after running his own marathon covering the Commonwealth Games.
He will likely again lead Seven's (final) broadcast of the tennis and its new cricket commentary team, probably alongside Bruce McAvaney, a cricket tragic who will have dibs on whatever role he desires (he might even sway Dennis Cometti back in to the commentary box attack).
McAvaney's passion for broadcasting was laid bare on Saturday while he actually wasn't working ... rather, getting all giddy watching champion mare Winx smash records at Randwick on her way to a 25th straight win.
How his excitement plays out in the middle against the slow whims of the five-day game will be "special" in itself to see.
But with a wealth of battle-hardened warriors like Ricky Ponting, Damien Fleming and WA's Adam Gilchrist ready to step up from the Big Bash stage, and Nine's best analysts Michael Slater and Shane Warne likely to also swing Seven's way, the new voices of summer already have more versatilty than an Aussie all-rounder.
The only downside to Warne signing with Seven is the prospect he could use his pull to negotiate an AFL commentary rider in his contract. Imagine the spin king sitting alongside Bruce and Wayne Carey in the Friday night football commentary box? Talk about an exotic threesome.
In all seriousness, Seven's biggest test won’t come on Boxing Day but over the entire summer, as it attempts to manage new content, personalities and logistics, and appease current sponsors and future ones, along with cricket fans accustomed to Nine's long-running style.
The googly in all of this is the widely held view that the best cricket series of the century - the Ashes 2005 - was broadcast brilliantly ... on SBS.
TV BROADCAST RIGHTS IN AUSTRALIA
AFL - $2.51 billion - Seven, Foxtel, Telstra
NRL - $1.85 billion - Nine, Foxtel, Telstra
Cricket Australia - $1.18 billion - Seven, Foxtel
Australian Open - $300 million - Nine
A-League - $364 million - Foxtel
Supercars - $241 million - Ten, Foxtel
How the new cricket TV deal works:
Channel Seven: Men's Tests, Women's Internationals, BBL (43 matches), WBBL (23 matches)
Fox Sports: Men's Tests, Woman's Internationals, Men's ODIs, Men's T20 Internationals, BBL (43 + 16 exclusive), WBBL (23 matches)