As the Kangaroos clung to their 10-6 winning margin in pelting rain at
Wembley Stadium on Saturday, Channel Nine's live telecast of the Rugby League
World Cup Final established a new midnight-to-dawn ratings record.
The match ended at 1.15 am on Sunday, Sydney time, with the final quarter
hour attracting a peak of 25.7 ratings points, with 317,138 homes tuned in, or
nearly one in four of the total 1,234,000 television households in the
Video-taping figures revealed by the A.C. Nielsen meters show that VCRs
were used to record the telecast in 96,252 homes, equal to a rating of 7.8
points, though many viewers may have watched as they taped.
Separate measurements gave a peak of 449,900 viewers during the closing 15
minutes of the match, but excluded viewers in hotels and clubs.
The previous midnight-to-dawn record of 22 points and 378,000 viewers in
268,180 Sydney homes, was set last November during the ABC telecast of the
Wallabies' victory over England in the Rugby Union World Cup, played at
Twickenham. While the Kangaroos can claim a new record, the 25.7 rating has to
be considered against a 32-point peak and a 30 rating (41 in Melbourne) at
midnight in July 1987, when Pat Cash was on his way to winning the men's singles
Under the old diary system, ratings cut out at midnight, so it is not
known how many viewers stayed on to see Cash through to victory.
Channel 9 won last week in Sydney after Channel 7 had gained an early lead
with a Gene Hackman movie, Narrow Margin, which peaked on 25 points over six
quarter hours, providing a strong lead-in to its late-night movie,
Westworld(peak 17), in which Yul Brynner portrayed a murderous malfunctioning
The gap quickly closed as bingo worked in Nine's favour. A strong (30
points peak) to moderate (22) performance made Nine National News a comfortable
winner all week, though Seven got within four points on Tuesday.
A Country Practice improved to 22 points, the Dennis Waterman comedy, On
the Up, went to 20, its best yet, while SBS claimed eight points for the movie
Sammy and Rosie Get Laid.
The 7.30 Report opened on 22 and 23 points, but ended a trying week on
only nine while a new half-hour series of Holiday rose to a promising 23.
Inside Edition (peak 12, low 10) and Hinch (peak 15, low 11) were
indifferent performers, but Channel 10's bigger concern may be Neighbours, which
last week started on 10 points, rose to 13, and averaged only 12.
HOW THE STATIONS RATED Week 35 (Oct 18-24, 1992)
WHAT'S HOT: success of the week RUGBY LEAGUE
WORLD CUP FINAL (9) 26 points peak at 1am
WHAT'S NOT: disaster of the week NEIGHBOURS
(10) 13 points peak, 10 low, av 12
6pm to midnight
(2) (7) (9) (10) (SBS)
SYDNEY SHARE 16.7 28.3 32.2 19.8 3.1
5-CITY SHARE 15.8 29.3 31.4 20.7 2.8
EVENING peak 20 21 30 13 5
NEWS av points 15.8 17.7 25.9 9.6 3.9
NUMBER ONE MOVIE: Narrow Margin (7)
25 points peak, av 24.6
One ratings point equals 12,340 Sydney homes
TOP 10 PROGRAMS (average number of viewers):
Funniest Home Video Show (9) 627,000
60 Minutes (9) 621,900
National Nine News (Sunday) (9) 612,700
Married With Children (9) 578,500
National Nine News (weekdays)(9) 570,000
A Current Affair (9) 564,000
Burke's Backyard (9) 556,800
Who's the Boss? (9) 540,100
Hey Dad | (7) 533,900
Narrow Margin (movie) (7) 530,300
(Source: A.C. Nielsen)