Davy celebrates rising TV viewing figures

Super League Chairman Ken Davy has issued an end-of-season message to Rugby League supporters in which he reveals that TV viewing figures have improved substantially during the 2021 season.

“In 2021 we’ve seen some great viewing figures for Super League games on Sky Sports this year, with more games than ever before breaking the 200,000-viewer mark, with over double that number tuning in to watch the Grand Final,” said Davy.

“The games attracting over 200,000 viewers involved ten different clubs, showing that the game’s popularity with viewers is across the league.”

League Express understands that the Grand Final drew an audience of just under 400,000 on Sky Sports, which is marginally below the 2019 figure, when St Helens defeated Salford Red Devils.
This season Catalans Dragons featured in the three biggest TV games of the season.

Apart from the Grand Final, their two home games against Hull Kingston Rovers – the first game of the season and the play-off game in Perpignan – drew audiences of just under 300,000, larger than any other games during the season.

Davy commended St Helens for their success and remarked on the success of Catalans Dragons, while welcoming the accession of a second French club, Toulouse Olympique, into Super League next season.

“I would like to congratulate St Helens on making it a hat-trick of Grand Final victories following a nail-biting 12-10 win over Catalans Dragons last weekend. To keep that level of consistency across three seasons is a remarkable accomplishment for the whole club,” said Davy.

“A special mention and huge congratulations must also go to the St Helens Women’s team who claimed a treble of their own this year, securing the Challenge Cup, League Leaders’ shield and Grand Final trophies.

“The Dragons proved formidable opponents in their maiden Grand Final appearance, and I am sure Steve McNamara will be doing all he can to build on this season, which also saw them lift the League Leaders’ shield for the first time in their history.

“Next season we welcome a second French team into Super League for the first-time following Toulouse Olympique’s 34-12 victory in the Million Pound Game. I look forward to Toulouse embracing their opportunity in Super League and providing an additional route to the elite level for more French players.

“I would also like to thank our fantastic commercial and broadcast partners who continue to support and champion the sport. I was delighted that we were able to announce a two-year extension to Betfred’s sponsorship ahead of the Grand Final, making them the joint longest serving title partner for Super League.”

In recognition of Betfred’s contribution to the game, Davy has presented Betfred owner Fred Done with a replica Grand Final trophy.

“Fred and all his team at Betfred have been fantastic supporters of Super League over the course of their involvement and as a token of our appreciation we were delighted to present him with a replica of the trophy, which St Helens went on to claim, for a third time in a row, on Saturday night.”

“Since day one, Betfred have been right behind both Super League and the sport of Rugby League as a whole. The passion Fred and his team show for the sport, its clubs, players and fans is fantastic to see.

“But we cannot start to look ahead to 2022 season without acknowledging the challenges still facing the game. As with all areas of society, Rugby League has been massively affected by the global pandemic and whilst the green shoots of recovery are beginning, I hope for a full return to normality next year and hope to see plenty more fans return to our stadiums.

“Our ongoing talks with the Rugby Football League on re-alignment of the whole sport are progressing well and with the future of the sport as our sole focus, I hope we will be able to update everyone on this in the not-too-distant future.”

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