Channel 4 bosses have cleared their daytime schedules and will be screening the Paralympics non-stop today – apart from a half hour break at 7pm for the News – after viewers complained that they weren’t showing enough sport.
The surprise announcement came on Twitter after viewers kicked-off over the frequent commercial breaks which denied viewers cyclist Jody Cundy’s angry tantrum on Friday afternoon and interrupted the opening ceremony.
Cundy (above) was furious after adjudicators harshly disqualified him after his wheel span in the starting block.
Others said that presenters spent too long chatting to guests and didn’t show enough sport, while the tone of Jon Snow’s commentary on the Opening Ceremony was also criticised in some quarters.
The games were originally scheduled to appear on More4 during the daytime, but C4 bosses – who paid £9m for the Paralympic TV rights – moved them to the flagship channel after unprecedented viewing figures over the weekend.
Many have said that the broadcaster should have made this decision earlier after 11.2m tuned in to watch the opening ceremony – the highest ratings the channel has had for a decade.
“The coverage of the Paralympics has completely captured the public’s imagination,” said Channel 4’s chief creative officer Jay Hunt. “We are clearing our schedule to bring viewers even more of this fantastic sport”.