AFL and NRL enjoy big audiences and crowds on ANZAC Day 2024

ANZAC Day is a big day for all teams and leagues concerned, the modern AFL event between Collingwood and Essendon dates back to 1995, while the NRLs variant between Sydney and St George dates to 2002. Recently it was announced that Rugby Australia was keen to explore the idea of a Bledisloe Cup on the day.


Essendons match versus Collingwood at the MCG attracted a monster crowd of 93,644 – the third largest ANZAC Day crowd of all time (behind 2023 and 1995), and the fourth largest home and away crowd ever for the league (Behind the aforementioned ANZAC day crowds and a 1958 Collingwood v Melbourne clash that drew 99,256).

On Television, the match reached 1.958m on Seven, with an average of 895,000 (down 5.69% on 2023).

  • Reach: 1.958m
  • Average: 895,000 (-5.69% on 2023)
  • Metro 612,000 [Syd 20k Mel 379k Bri 28k Adl 96k Per 92k]
  • Regional 283,000

The inaugural Giants/Lions game at Manuka Oval in the evening saw 13,080 attend. This was the 15th highest attended match at the venue for the AFL, and behind the Giants record of 14,974 in 2016 v the Tigers.

The game had a massive reach of over 2 million but had an average viewership of just under 466,000. Ratings in Sydney were about average for the Giants, and lower than expected for the Lions.

  • Reach 2.093m
  • Average 466,000
  • Metro 318,000 [Syd 29k Mel 161k Bri 35k Adl 58k Per 35k]
  • Regional 115,000


The NRL played three matches with the Warriors playing the early game agains the Warriors in front of a packed crowd of 23,912 at Go Media Stadium. This game was exclusive to Fox in Australia, and ratings are unfortunately not available.

The main game was the now traditional Roosters/Dragons game at Allianz Stadium, which was announced as a sellout in advance and attracted a spectacular crowd of 40,727 – this is the fourth highest crowd for this fixture (behind the record 2018 match – 41,142 – and 2017, as well as 2013).

The game had a reach of 1.044m on Nine and an average of 433,000 – down 19% on 2023.

  • Reach 1.044m
  • Average 433,000 (-19% on 2023) [Syd 159k Bris 78k]

The night game was between the Storm and Rabbitohs and drew a very handy 25,149 for the game. This was the 11th highest match for the Storm at Aami Park, and their fourth highest crowd on ANZAC Day – previously having played in front of larger ANZAC day crowds v NZ in 2013, 2014, and 2018. (The record being 28,716 in 2014).

The match was something of a blow out, resulting in a lower than desired television spectactle reaching 1.344m on Nine, with an average of 480,000.

  • Reach 1.344m
  • Average 480,000 [Syd 162k Bris 95k]
  • * Melb on primary channel not available, match rated lower than prematch coverage at 56k

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