If you are a cricket fan in the US, it’s simple: you need Willow TV. It is the main place to watch live cricket as well as replays. Otherwise, there are going to be few matches to watch on TV. Read on to learn all your options.
In a hurry? You can buy Willow TV directly, but we think it is best to go with Sling TV. That’s especially true if you care about other sports or you originally come from India or Pakistan because Sling has specialized plans.
Table Of Contents
Willow and Willow Xtra are TV channels that you surely want to secure access to if you are interested in cricket. They provide coverage of competitions such as Cricket World Cups, T20 World Cups, Big Bash League, Indian Premier League (IPL), and Pakistan Super League.
If these channels intrigue you, and you are a cord-cutter based in the United States, you should consider making your way to Sling TV ($10/mo) to gain access to it and many other ones. Alternatively, you could subscribe to Willow directly ($9.99/mo in the US, $7.99CAD/mo in Canada).
Willow as a channel launched in the USA in 2010 before welcoming Canadians to its offerings in 2019. However, it got its start in 2003 as a streaming-only outlet.
At that time, it was focused outside of North America, in places such as Europe and Australia. During its early days, it served as an innovative outlet for the sport with live interactive scorecards and high-quality streams.
Events and Leagues Covered
Today, Willow is the official broadcaster of: the International Cricket Council (ICC), Cricket Australia, England and Wales Cricket Board, Cricket South Africa, and many others! Details on both international live matches and club contests below.
T20 Leagues on Willow
The IPL is one of the world’s most-attended cricket competitions. Its average attendance is around 30,000 while highly anticipated showdowns can be played in front of crowds exceeding 70,000. Those numbers are understandable given how popular cricket is in this populous country.
Of course, India does not have a monopoly on cricket in this region. Other leagues there, such as the Pakistan Super League and Lanka Premier League, draw plenty of spectators in Pakistan and Sri Lanka, respectively. This is also unsurprising as cricket is the most popular sport in those countries as well.
Although Australia’s sports interests are varied, cricket holds a significant piece of that pie. Much of that focus is on the Big Bash League, which normally draws attendances of around 20,000. Its teams are situated along the coast between Brisbane and Adelaide and in Perth and Tasmania. Teamless Canberra hosts matches as well.
Closer to the US is the Caribbean Premier League. This competition was first held in 2013 and features teams spread across six countries. However, it is a short competition as it usually lasts around a month. During normal times, each of the participants’ hosts matches.
Meanwhile, organizers looking to promote the sport in the USA have created Major League Cricket and Minor League Cricket. In fact, Willow is one of the co-founders of Major League Cricket. That competition is not slated to start until 2023 while Minor League Cricket had its inaugural season in 2021. Willow streamed MiLC matches, and it is assumed that it will be involved with MLC.
ICC Competitions on Willow
Willow broadcasts all of the major international competitions in this sport.
The Men’s Cricket World Cup, first played in 1975, is contested every four years and consists of One Day Internationals (ODIs). Heading into the 2023 competition, Australia has set the pace with five titles, India and the West Indies have two trophies apiece, and England, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka have each won one.
The Women’s Cricket World Cup initially took place in 1973 and is normally held every four years. Heading into 2022, Australia has lifted the trophy the most times: six. The Aussies are followed by England on the list of title winners with four championships while their neighbor New Zealand has won this event once.
The Men’s T20 World Cup has a more recent history, having first been held in 2007. This event is also different in that it is usually held every two years. Heading into 2022, the West Indies are the only team with multiple wins, having won it twice, while Australia, England, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka have each won one.
The Women’s T20 World Cup is, as expected, similar to its men’s counterpart as it was first held in 2009 and is normally scheduled for every two years as well. However, it does differ in that one team has dominated it. Australia has won it five times with just two others winning it once apiece: England and West Indies.
Other ICC competitions that are shown on Willow include the Champions Trophy, which is a ODI event that was intended to no longer be held past 2013 but was later scheduled for 2017 and will return in 2025. Another ICC event is the World Test Championship, which involves Test matches played in a league setup.
Qualifying games for major cricket events are also regularly broadcast on Willow.
Other National Team Matches on Willow
Numerous other national team matches are shown on Willow as well. These include ones played by Australia, Bangladesh, England, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Zimbabwe.
Among the most prestigious contests in this group are the Ashes, a series of Test matches played between Australia and England.
Volleyball on Willow
Although the vast majority of Willow’s content is cricket-related, the network does sometimes branch out into other sports. One example is its streaming of matches in the Prime Volleyball League, an Indian competition.
See also our Sling TV volleyball guide.
What Is Not on Willow?
Although Willow is a comprehensive resource for cricket coverage in the US and Canada, it is not exhaustive. Some exceptions exist.
Most notably, ESPN+ ($6.99/mo) is where US-based cricket fans need to go for live streaming of cricket national teams in India, New Zealand, and West Indies. Also, note that numerous West Indies-related international matches are available on YouTube for free.
Willow consists of two channels: Willow and Willow Xtra. There is little difference between them, and they should essentially be thought of like you would compare ESPN and ESPN2.
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If you are in the US and would like to stream Willow and Willow Xtra, you have two options. Canadians can now stream those channels as well. However, note that rights restrictions related to what can be shown in your country do vary some.
You can get a monthly subscription directly from Willow at a cost of $9.99/mo if you are based in the US or $7.99CAD/mo if you are situated in Canada. Note that doing so in the US will also grant you access to Gaana, an Indian music streaming service, at no extra cost.
You do not need to subscribe to either Sling TV‘s Orange or Blue plans ($35/mo individually or $50/mo combined) to enjoy Willow. Instead, doing so through Sling can cost you as little as $10/mo.
Getting that lower rate can be done through the Urdu Pack, which includes 17 channels for $10/mo. Amongst its offerings, in addition to Willow and Willow Xtra, are a variety of channels aimed at those with Pakistani roots or interested in Pakistani culture (eg, ARY Digital, Geo TV, and Hum TV). You would also receive the World Sports Bonus for no extra charge, which includes beIN Sports channels.
Another $10/mo option is getting the World Sports plan, which offers the same sports-focused channels as above. It includes Willow, Willow Xtra, beIN Sports, beIN Sports en Espanol, and beIN Sports Connect as well as one more: Premiere, a Brazilian network that focuses on Brazilian club soccer matches.
If you are solely focused on Willow and Willow Xtra, you could get Sling TV‘s Willow Cricket plan, which provides you with just those two channels for $10/mo although the cost is $5 for your first month.
If you would like access to general interest channels in addition to Willow and Willow Xtra, you have options besides the Urdu Pack. These include:
- Bangla Super ($15/mo)
- Hindi ($30/mo)
- Hindi Mega ($44.99/mo)
- Kannada ($20/mo)
- Punjabi ($15/mo)
- Telugu ($15/mo)
- Tamil ($15/mo)
- Tamil Gold ($25/mo)
- Malayalam Gold ($25/mo)
- Punjabi Super ($24.99/mo)
- Punjabi-Hindi ($30/mo)
- Urdu-Hindi ($30/mo).
Meanwhile, those who would like a package more focused on American culture can get the Sling Orange plan for its regular price of $35/mo and add on the World Sports plan at a permanent half-price rate: $5/mo. This comes with ESPN, ESPN2, Disney Channel, and roughly 30 others.
See our Sling TV T20 Women’s World Cup Guide.
Other Ways To Get Willow
Unfortunately, besides subscribing to Willow directly or through Sling TV, your only other option is with a traditional cable TV provider. The list of ones that offer Willow and Willow Xtra include CenturyLink, Dish Network, Google Fiber, Optimum, Spectrum, Verizon Fios, and Xfinity.
You can also stream live cricket matches through ESPN+ ($6.99/mo), ICC.tv (various prices), and YouTube (free). The last of these is courtesy of the West Indies’ official channel: Windies Cricket.
Devices for Live Streaming Cricket TV
The Sling TV and Willow apps allow you to stream on the most popular devices:
- Amazon Fire TV
- Android mobile
- Android TV
- Apple TV
- iOS (iPhone,iPad)
- Samsung smart TVs
- Xbox One
- Web browsers (via www.willow.tv).
There are also Sling TV apps for the Oculus VR system as well as the LG and VIZIO smart TVs.
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Willow and Willow Xtra are must-have channels for those passionate or curious about cricket, and you won’t miss a single wicket with these channels.
If you would like to stream them, you can do so through Sling TV ($10/mo) or Willow directly ($9.99/mo) if you are based in the US or directly from Willow ($7.99CAD/mo) if you are in Canada.
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