England’s top-tier Rugby Union competition, Premiership Rugby, has announced that it has broken both in-person attendance and TV viewership records during its round nine and 10 regular-season fixtures.
The five round-10 fixtures, which took place across December 30 and 31, drew 152,101 fans, an average of 30,420 per game, the highest in the league’s history for a single round of fixtures.
Rounds nine and 10 of the Premiership saw a combined peak audience of 1.8 million across its six televised games, including free-to-air simulcasts on the ITV4 channel.
Individually, the league’s record for top viewership of the 2023-24 season was broken twice in consecutive weeks.
In round 9, the Bath’s fixture against Harlequins set the season-high average of 247,000 viewers, then in the following round, Northampton Saints’ defeat of Sale Sharks bettered that tally to set a new high average of 259,000. Both games peaked at 308,000 viewers.
The latter fixture drew the highest viewership of a Premiership Rugby regular-season game on TNT Sport (formerly BT Sport) since round 13 of the 2021-22 season and is the eighth most-watched regular season Premiership fixture since it came to the broadcaster.
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Premiership Rugby chief executive Simon Massie-Taylor stated: “To break attendance and broadcast records during our blockbuster festive fixtures shows just how passionate and dedicated our Gallagher Premiership Rugby fans are.”
Of the ten fixtures across rounds 9 and 10, five were sell-outs, with the 15,000 crowd attending Exeter Chiefs vs Leicester Tigers a new record for the Chiefs’ Sandy Park stadium.
Massie-Taylor added that the social numbers for the league were up by 30% in round 10, with just under 11 million impressions across the two days’ fixtures.
“It’s great to see supporters turning up in big numbers – and the impressive figures for both TNT Sports and ITV show that this season continues to produce unmissable entertainment.”