A whopping 2.51m viewers watched the first State of Origin match for 2012 as Queensland, somewhat controversially, defeated New South Wales in an 18-10 victory at Etihad Stadium last night.
The numbers set a new record for Origin as the highest since the introduction of OzTAM ratings (previously 2.45m in 2010).
But a ruling by referee Sean Hampstead awarding Greg Inglis’s 73rd-minute try has Blues fans crying foul.
There were 1.15m viewers watching in Sydney alone, with another 906,000 in Brisbane. In Melbourne where the match was held 313,000 watched.
The game netted Nine a huge 40.6% share over Seven 23.55 and TEN 18.8%.
Nine’s other fare included The Block (1.35m), Nine News (1.28m), A Current Affair (1.17m), Big Bang Theory (812,000) and Hot Seat (721,000).
Seven adjusted its schedule around Origin but finished with Seven News on 1.4m, then Today Tonight (1.23m), Home and Away (897,000), Deal or No Deal (696,000), Castle (463,000 / 439,000) and The Price is Right (388,000). Australia’s Got Talent was 547,000 in three states while in two states Border Security and The Force were 341,000 and 242,000 respectively.
MasterChef settled on 975,000 against Origin with other TEN shows being Offspring (726,000), TEN News (713,000), The Project 6pm (463,000) and The Good Wife (445,000).
ABC News was 998,000 for ABC1 with the network also under fire from Origin. Next were 7:30 (644,000), Wild Life at the Zoo (470,000), Randling (401,000), Agony Aunts (301,000). Laid flopped at just 201,000 -lower than Lateline‘s 219,000.
Wildest India was 276,000 for SBS ONE and Extreme Frontiers: Canada was 259,000.
Neighbours led multichannels with 326,000.
ABC News Breakfast: 43,000 / 35,000