Willie O’Reilly: A win-win as TV rivals team up for the Six Nations

The unexpected truce between RTÉ and Virgin may be down to the personalities at the top, but the result is a free-to-air winner for fans

Johnny Sexton is tackled by the English defence at the Aviva Stadium during last year’s Six Nations tournament. Picture: Getty

Hostilities have ceased. Hallelujah. No, not between Russia and Ukraine: I mean more domestically, between RTÉ and Virgin Media.

Our two English-language broadcasters are natural competitors with competing schedules. They are both in the market for franchised shows such as Gogglebox, The Voice and Dancing With the Stars. Domestic and international sports rights mean they regularly bid against each other.

Last week, however, they called a truce and divided the spoils between them. The spoils ...