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Rugby League has won the battle of the television screens with all matches in the first round of the Telstra Premiership Finals series scoring national ratings success through the Nine, NBN and WIN networks.

As well as attracting a ‘Week 1’ attendance record of 123,391 fans (ahead of 2006’s 104,457), every NRL match (viewership measured from kick-off to full-time) emerged the national ratings victor ahead of the nearest scheduled sporting event.

Wests Tigers’ win over Premiers St George Illawarra was the highest ever rating Sydney audience for a ‘Week 1’ game, with 642,801 viewers, and the second highest ‘Week 1’ match nationally with 1.6million viewers (second to the Broncos v Storm in 2004 with 1.7m).

The Wests Tigers v Dragons match at ANZ Stadium also boasted the biggest Sydney crowd for the opening week of a Telstra Premiership Finals series (45,631 ahead of 33,315 who attended the 2010 match between Wests Tigers and the Roosters).

“It is a really strong result and another example of the steep growth of the game,” NRL Chief Executive, Mr David Gallop, said today.

“The game took a clear view a year ago that we needed to grow the crowd capacity around these matches and while there are inevitably those who want to cling to what best suits them the message from this week is pretty clear.

“There needs to be an incentive for people to become members of their club and that should include the chance to be at the big games and to watch them in comfort.”

NRL Games


Kick Off

National Ratings

Wests Tigers v St.George Illawarra Dragons




Brisbane Broncos v New Zealand Warriors




Manly Sea Eagles v North Queensland Cowboys




Melbourne Storm v Newcastle Knights