The Season that Was…2020 – NRL TV Ratings *updated 18/10*

The 2020 NRL season totaled 70.2 million viewers across the Nine Network and Foxleague, up 0.35% on the first 20 rounds of 2019, but down 20.4% on the 2019 total. More matches were played compared to the first 20 rounds of last year, leading to an average of 439,000, down 4.6% on the first 20 rounds of 2019, but down 4.36% on the full year average,

NRL matches on Nine averaged 549,000 per game, down 4.36% on the first 20 rounds of 2019, but up 0.18% on the final year average. This included a metro average of 333,000 (-5.6%) and a regional average of 216,000 (-2.68%).

NRL matches on Foxleague averaged 233,000, down 0.43% on the first 20 rounds of 2019, but up 0.87% on the end of year Fox average. Foxtel ratings accounted for 53% of the ratings total.

NRL Ratings were down in Sydney dropped 9.07% to an average of 184,000, while ratings in Brisbane were down 7.52% to an average of 116,000.

In Melbourne, NRL ratings were up 39% to an average of 17,000, including an average of 37,000 for games involving the Storm.

Adelaide experienced a 55% ratings increase to 8,000 per game, while Perth dropped 8% to 6,000 per game. Overall the minor NRL cities were up 22% on the first 20 rounds of 2019.

To no ones surprise, the Broncos were the most watched NRL team in the 2020 H&A season. The Storm however were the most watched NRL team on Foxtels set top boxes.In fact, the Melbourne Storm had the best Foxtel viewing average of both the NRL and AFL. NRL sides with the 9 best average results, Collingwood with the top AFL average in at #10.

NRL had 160 games (up from 152) with 60 FTA games nationally broadcast (no change).

Finals

Week 1 of the 2020 NRL Finals rated 3.662m viewers across the Nine and Foxtel networks (without streaming). This figure is down 7.41% on the 3.955m who watched Week 1 in 2019 with FTA ratings down 11.8% and Fox up 3.9%.  Week 1 of the 2020 NRL Finals was down in both Brisbane (-26%) and Sydney (-12%), while viewing for the Week 1 Storm/Eels Final on 9 in Melbourne was down 21% on the 2019 Storm/Raiders game in the same week last year.

2020 NRL Finals Week 2 rated 2.251m viewers across 9/Fox, down 5.1% on the 2019 series. FTA down 9% – all metro and reg markets down, while Fox is up 9% on week 2 of last year.

Friday nights Roosters vs Raiders NRL clash averaged 445k nationally (pay-tv 302k) (streaming 143k). The combined audience figure made it the 4th highest ever NRL Finals game on Fox League of all time.

Nine’s Free-To-Air coverage of the match averaged 781k nationally (489k metro), This puts the final combined FTA+FoxLeague audience for the game at 1.226 million.

NRL prelim finals rated 2.495m across Nine and the Foxtel set top box networks, this figure is down 23.72% (776,000) on the 2019 Finals series, down 4.92% on Fox and down 29% on FTA. Streaming not included.

The 2020 NRL Finals series have rated 8.408m to date, down 12.4% (1.191m) on the 2019 Finals series. Metro FTA -22%, Reg -10%, but Fox holding up 2.5%.

2020 NRL season and finals ratings total 78.6m on Nine/Fox STB’s heading into the Grand Final next week. This figure is down 1.19%, but the 948,000 deficit should more than be made up by streaming over the course of the year. (Does not include preseason, NRLW or coming Origin.)

 

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