Origin and Nines break records

This week’s State of Origin match at ANZ Stadium has registered the highest TV ratings for any Origin match in the history of Rugby League.

And it is the highest rating television show so far this year – eclipsing Origin I, which was the previous top rating show of 2014.

A total of 4.193 million viewers watched the NSW Blues break Queensland’s eight year Origin reign on Channel 9. This is on top of the 83,421 fans who watched the game live at ANZ.

The audience included a total metropolitan audience of 2.70 million viewers, a 20 per cent increase in the Sydney audience (1.20 million) compared with the same game last year, the second highest regional State of Origin audience ever (1.49 million average) and the biggest Origin audience on record in Perth (121,000) and an average of 420,000 viewers in Melbourne.

The pre-game and post-game segments also attracted huge audiences of more than 1.2 million each, with the game taking the top three spots in the ratings.

And more than 8 million unique people tuned into official NRL, QLD and NSW Facebook page content for Origin II in a single day. Origin II set new NRL Facebook and Twitter records.

“State of Origin is bigger than it has ever been,” said NRL Head of Commercial Paul Kind.

“Channel 9 deserves congratulations for the success of its world class coverage of both Origin games so far this year.

“Now the Origin focus moves to Brisbane for game III on July 9 and I have no doubt it will be just as competitive and keenly fought as the first two games.”

Meanwhile the NRL has welcomed the release of figures showing the inaugural Dick Smith NRL Auckland Nines tournament, held in February delivered more than $9 million in economic benefit to the city.

Earlier this week the Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) released an economic impact statement on the tournament, which brought together the 16 NRL clubs in Auckland for one weekend in 15-16 February.

ATEED found that the Nines outstripped all of its first year targets by delivering $9.35 million in GDP to Auckland – more than double the forecast return on investment.

It attracted 6,000 Aussies from across the Tasman, plus a further 16,000 Kiwis from around New Zealand, all of whom stayed an average of three nights in Auckland, delivering more than 68,000 visitor nights for Auckland’s accommodation sector and providing more than one million television viewers from Australia (the tournament was televised on Fox Sports).

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