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BBC to screen Six Nations rugby live online

BBC Sport and rugby union's Six Nations Committee have signed a deal that will see the BBC's live television coverage of the 2005 championship broadcast simultaneously online for the first time. The games will run on the BBC Sport website and on the Six Nations site. The deal marks the first time the games have been broadcast on the web in full. Previously, limited highlights of video footage have been available online at half and full time, but the agreement with the Six Nations Committee gives UK rugby fans the chance to watch all the action as a live simulcast. Andrew Thompson, BBC Sport's head of development, new media and sports news, said: "This deal enables us to make the championship even more accessible to people. "Viewing habits are constantly changing, and this is another example of BBC Sport innovating to make sure we deliver the best possible service to all our licence fee payers." Separately has teamed up with Fantasy League and Land Rover, official sponsor of England and Premier Rugby, to run Fantasy Six Nations. The free-to-play game gives players the chance to win a range of prizes with the overall top scoring fantasy coach winning three weekend breaks (Paris, Rome and Edinburgh) courtesy of EasyJet. Rugby fans simply select their 15-man team and nominate a goal kicker. Or they choose a 'Luck Dip' option to automatically select a valid team. Once the tournament is under way, fantasy players can make transfers between each round of the Six Nations as well as setting up their own private leagues allowing fans to compete against friends and colleagues. Scrum commercial director Barry French said: "We believe that the fact that the game is free to play, allied to the fabulous prizes on offer, will prove an irresistible combination." The RBS Six Nations Tournament kicks off on February 5 as players from the four home nations seek to catch the eye of the selectors for the summer's British and Irish Lions Tour to New Zealand. UKFast is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites.

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