Channel 5’s Bellator MMA coverage shows Peppa Pig instead of the main event 4 years ago

Channel 5’s Bellator MMA coverage shows Peppa Pig instead of the main event

Staying up all night to watch American sporting events is a sign of dedication.

It is something Irish fans of boxing, UFC, Bellator, WWE and NFL have all experienced – shows that start in the evening in the US will kick off in the middle of the night Ireland time, and go on to the early hours. It becomes a ritual to stock up on snacks and Red Bull, and power through. And sometimes even go to work the next day, completely delirious from lack of sleep.


That’s what Irish Bellator fans were doing on Saturday night. Channel 5 were showing Bellator 206 live, and it was the first big Bellator event that to be broadcast live in the UK and Ireland, as opposed to on tape delay. However, the event overran past the scheduled finish of 10pm Pacific Time, or 6am in Ireland.

Which meant, instead of showing the main event, Irish fans got to see this…


Yup, instead of extending their coverage, the broadcaster just cut straight to the regularly scheduled block of children's programming - meaning that bleary-eyed fight fans were left with Peppa Pig instead of the main event between middleweight champion Gerard Mousasi and welterweight champion Rory MacDonald.

Needless to say, people were pissed.


While it is common for regularly scheduled programming to be delayed in the event of sporting events overrunning - Love Island was even delayed after some of England's World Cup games this summer - it appears OFCOM regulations might have come into play. Apparently, programmes rated 15 cannot be shown after the 6am watershed, hence the cut-off.

Bellator President Scott Coker was asked about the screw-up at the post-fight press conference, and said they were looking to get a replay of the event out.


Coker was reported as saying "There were emails going back and forth, and they were not friendly."

Channel 5 have been contacted for comment, and we are awaiting clarification on what happened.