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Leigh Diffey, Ahmed Fareed and Sky Sports’ Rupert Cox to Host Rugby World Cup Programming

Cox and NBC Sports Rugby Analysts Alex Corbisiero and Brian Hightower to Call All Team USA Games

Former USA Rugby Captain Dan Lyle Joins Corbisiero and Hightower as Studio Analysts

Sky Sports’ Gail Davis and James Cole will report on-site from Japan

Unprecedented 250+ Hours of Rugby World Cup 2019 Matches & Programming

Rugby World Cup 2019 Begins with Russia v. Host Nation Japan on Sept. 20 at 6 a.m. ET on NBCSN

NBC Sports Gold’s Direct-to-Consumer “Rugby World Cup Pass” to Live Stream All 48 Tournament Games – 22 Exclusively – Available NOW for $199

STAMFORD, Conn. – Sept. 11, 2019 – NBC Sports has announced its broadcast team for the 2019 Rugby World Cup, teaming up with Sky Sports to provide coverage of all 48 tournament games. The World Cup begins on Friday, Sept. 20, with Russia v. host-nation Japan at 6 a.m. ET on NBCSN as NBC Sports is set to present the most comprehensive U.S. coverage of the Rugby World Cup ever, providing an unprecedented 250+ hours of Rugby World Cup 2019 matches and programming.

NBC Sports’ Leigh Diffey will host Rugby World Cup programming across NBC Sports properties throughout the knockout round, while NBC Sports’ Ahmed Fareed will host during pool play and Sky Sports’ Rupert Cox will host programming throughout the entire tournament. NBC Sports rugby analysts Alex Corbisiero, who played internationally for England, Brian Hightower, a former USA Rugby World Cup participant and USA Sevens captain, and Dan Lyle, former USA Rugby captain and Premiership Rugby player, will serve as studio analysts.

For select matches, including all Team USA games, Cox will provide play-by-play as Corbisiero and Hightower serve as game analysts. They will also call all of the knockout round matches. Sky Sports’ Gail Davis and James Cole will report on-site from Japan, providing updates on the USA and England teams.

NBC Sports’ 2019 Rugby World Cup Commentator Team:

Leigh DiffeyStudio Host
Ahmed FareedStudio Host
Rupert CoxStudio Host & Play-By-Play
Alex CorbisieroStudio & Game Analyst
Brian HightowerStudio & Game Analyst
Dan LyleStudio Analyst
Gail DavisOn-Site Reporter
James ColeOn-Site Reporter

Over the course of the six-week tournament, NBC Sports will present more than 250 hours of Rugby World Cup 2019 matches, original programming and additional Rugby World Cup content. All 48 tournament matches from Japan will be available live, commercial-free and on-demand on NBC Sports Gold, including 22 matches exclusive to the subscribers of the direct-to-consumer package. Twenty-six of the 48 matches will be shown live on NBCSN, and streamed via authentication on and the NBC Sports app. Some games will also be shown on delay on NBC.

Team USA will compete in Pool C against Argentina, England, France and Tonga. NBCSN will televise all U.S. matches live, and Davis and Cole will provide live pre- and post-match reports for each game. Following is Team USA’s pool play schedule:

    • Thursday, September 26 at 6:45 a.m. ET v. England
    • Wednesday, October 2 at 3:35 a.m. ET v. France
    • Wednesday, October 9 at 12:45 a.m. ET v. Argentina
    • Sunday, October 13 at 1:45 a.m. ET v. Tonga

The pool play round consists of 40 matches – divided amongst four pools consisting of five nations each – that run through Sunday, Oct. 13.

The quarterfinals will be held on Saturday, Oct. 19, and Sunday, Oct. 20, while the semifinals will be played on the following weekend of Saturday, Oct. 26, and Sunday, Oct. 27.

The Rugby World Cup Final will be called by Cox, Corbisiero and Hightower on Saturday, Nov. 2, from International Stadium Yokohama. Both semifinal matches and the World Cup Final will be available live on NBC Sports Gold and re-aired on NBC. NBCSN will also present live coverage of the 2019 Final.

NBC Sports Gold provides rugby fans with unprecedented access to Rugby World Cup 2019 with multiple direct-to-consumer live streaming passes, which include commercial-free coverage, live and on-demand, on desktop, mobile, tablet and connected TV devices.

In pool play, two games each from the following nations will be available exclusively on Gold: Wales (ranked No. 1 in the world), New Zealand (No. 2), Ireland (No. 3) South Africa (No. 4) and England (No. 5). In the knockout round, two quarterfinal matches will also be presented exclusively on Gold.

Highlights of exclusive Gold matches in pool play include:

    • Saturday, September 21 at 3:15 a.m. ET: France v. Argentina
    • Saturday, September 21 at 5:45 a.m. ET: New Zealand v. South Africa
    • Sunday, September 22 at 3:45 a.m. ET: Ireland v. Scotland
    • Saturday, September 28 at 3:15 a.m. ET: Japan v. Ireland
    • Sunday, September 29 at 3:45 a.m. ET: Australia v. Wales
    • Saturday, October 5 at 4 a.m. ET: England v. Argentina
    • Saturday, October 12 at 4:15 a.m. ET: England v. France

Following are the NBC Sports Gold Rugby World Cup 2019 options available for purchase:

    • Rugby World Cup Pass

      • Available for $199.99 for the entire tournament ($4.15 per game)
      • Includes all 48 matches live, commercial-free and on-demand

        • 22 exclusive matches to be shown only on NBC Sports Gold
      • Features exclusive original programming, daily pre- and post-day shows, extended match highlights and more
    • “Rugby World Cup Single Match Pass”

      • Available for $29.99 for one pool play match
    • “All-Access Premium Rugby Pass”

      • Available for $229.99
      • Includes all offerings from “Rugby Pass” and “Rugby World Cup Pass”
      • “Rugby Pass” consists of all matches from the Premiership Rugby League, Six Nations Championship, Heineken Champions Cup and knockout phase matches of the European Rugby Cup Challenge

Rugby World Cup 2019 offerings are now available to U.S. commercial establishments through the NBC Sports Pub Pass – a new customizable direct-to-consumer platform developed specifically for the retail pub/restaurant market in the U.S. Through the Rugby World Cup Pub Pass, all 48 tournament matches will be available live, commercial-free and on-demand.


NBC Sports Gold is NBC Sports’ direct-to-consumer live streaming product that provides sports fans with access to exclusive premium sports events and content, live and on-demand, at an affordable price. Launched in 2016 with a single cycling product, NBC Sports Gold currently offers 17 individual sports “passes” – twelve domestic (PGA TOUR LIVE, Premier League, Premier League Match Day, INDYCAR, Cycling, Track & Field, Premier Lacrosse League, Speed Skating, Rugby, Rugby World Cup, Supercross, and Snow, consisting of seven Olympic winter sports); two regional (Blazers and Philly); one combination (Supercross and Pro Motocross), two domestic and international (Figure Skating and Pro Motocross); and one international-only (Notre Dame Football). Find NBC Sports Gold in the NBC Sports app available on Apple iOS & tvOS, Android, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Chromecast and, and also on Xfinity X1 and Xfinity Flex.