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SHAMROCK ROVERS: The Dublin club made €300,000 from the TV rights to last week's game against Italian giants Juventus

SHAMROCK ROVERS: The Dublin club made €300,000 from the TV rights to last week's game against Italian giants Juventus

SHAMROCK ROVERS: The Dublin club made €300,000 from the TV rights to last week's game against Italian giants Juventus

MORE than half of Irish business owners agree with Communications Minister Eamon Ryan that some sporting events -- such as Ireland's involvement in next year's Six Nations -- should be designated free-to-air, and not go up on the TV rights market.

While events like the GAA Football and Hurling Championships are already free-to-air only, rights for Ireland's Six Nations matches are purchased by RTE on the open market.

Designating Irish rugby matches as free-to-air would certainly reduce the State broadcaster's bill -- but the IRFU has argued that such a move would be "seriously misguided" and leave them unable to pay players and support clubs.

The IRFU currently receives €15m for the broadcast rights to international and provincial matches. The Department of Communications put out a tender in July, for a consultant to report on the matter to the Minister.

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