Why was Our Girl used as scheduling football during World Cup and tennis?

Michelle Keegan in Our Girl series 3

Fans of Our Girl are understandably cheesed off that the show has played second shrift to World Cup football and Wimbledon tennis, leaving erratic gaps between episodes…

Whilst the FIFA World Cup, that concluded over the weekend, has brought an awful lot of joy and entertainment to many, it’s been less welcomed by fans of the terrific military drama, Our Girl. And, for that matter, the tennis has done the programme no favours either.

The show, headlined by Michelle Keegan, has been running the second part of its third season – Nigeria, Belize and Bangladesh Tours – since June 5th. But for such a premium BBC drama, it’s really surprising how much it’s been held hostage to the sporting schedules. Has any show been kicked around as much as this one?

The current run had been going out at 9pm on Tuesday nights on BBC One. But then episode five was moved to a Wednesday at the start of the month to accommodate the World Cup. Fans of Our Girl weren’t pleased with this, but it was nothing on what was to follow.

For fans have – for reasons of sport only – had to wait nearly two weeks for the sixth episode of the current batch.

Said episode had been rescheduled for Friday July 13th, but at the last minute, the BBC announced that it was changing its schedules again, this time to accommodate the semi-finals of the Wimbledon tennis championships. Not a great deal of notice was given, and understandably, fans of Our Girl have been thoroughly frustrated by the short shrift their show has been given.

Eventually, 13 days after it was last on BBC, a new episode of Our Girl screened last night. But it hardly helps a show that builds weekly to leave such an erratic gap between individual episodes. Do the BBC want us to watch it live?

More questions, too. Why is it that sport couldn’t be moved to BBC Two, for instance? Why couldn’t another show be rescheduled to accommodate the demands of live sport? Why should one of the BBC’s current crowning dramas be short changed?

At least the news from this stage onwards is better. The final two episodes of the current series run – episodes seven and eight of the current tour – will now screen next week. The penultimate episode will be shown on Monday night, and the finale on Tuesday evening.

Unless some more sport pops up, of course. But Our Girl deserves a lot better.