Football

RTE Viewing Figures Tell Their Own Story Of The Sporting Weekend Just Gone

RTE Viewing Figures Tell Their Own Story Of The Sporting Weekend Just Gone

RTÉ have released their viewing figures after a busy weekend of Irish sport.

Having aired Ireland's turgid 1-1 draw away to Georgia on Saturday evening, Sunday's All-Ireland hurling final decider between Galway and Waterford seems to have offered some much needed respite to disconsolate viewers.

With an average audience of 901,500, yesterday's hurling action far surpassed the 486,000 who were tuning in for Ireland's crucial World Cup qualifier.

Efforts to see which of Galway or Waterford would end their respective famine and regain the Liam MacCarthy cup went beyond television alone RTÉ have revealed:

This year's All-Ireland Senior Hurling Final has been the single biggest live stream event for RTÉ Player so far this year and saw the strongest volume of live streams for any All-Ireland Hurling Final on record for RTÉ Player with 60,987 live streams in total.

This shows an increase of 40% on 2016 All-Ireland Hurling Final streams and the strongest volume of live streams for any Sunday Game Live so far this year.

Although few will be surprised that one of the GAA's two showpiece events was more popular than a rather dreary Irish international (irrespective of it's actual sporting importance), probing the figures further reveals an unsettling statistic at hand.

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Compared to the 486,000 average viewer ratings for the Ireland match, the peak figure of 639,000 was recorded at 18:51 - roughly about the time the match was ending and Dunphy, Brady and Hamann became the focus once again.

While the peak figure for the hurling final (just over 1.1 million) was recorded at a relatively similar time, this can surely be explained in terms of the post-match celebrations, speeches etc, and not an overly keen desire to see what Ger Loughnane, Henry Shefflin and Liam Sheedy have to say of the match as a whole.

It is not great surprise that many viewers take enjoyment from seeing Dunphy & co. dissecting a poor Irish performance, but these figures are a staggering indictment of what an Irish performance ought to be about - namely watching the match first and foremost.

That being said, with regards the two individual sporting events in question, it would appear that the viewing majority were quite correct in their judgement this weekend.

Arthur James O'Dea

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