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RATINGS | 3.75 Million Australians tune in as Collingwood defeat Brisbane in Epic 2023 AFL Grand Final

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In a captivating conclusion to the 2023 AFL season, Collingwood outperformed the Brisbane Lions during Saturday’s Grand Final, held at the MCG.

The riveting face-off became the year’s second most-watched programme, only surpassed by our Matildas earlier this year during the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023.

An impressive tally of 3.75 million Australians tuned in to witness the final showdown on Seven and 7plus. This number comprised 3.3 million viewers from around the nation and 2.47 million from capital cities.

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With the Grand Final available to stream for the first time on mobile devices, 7plus saw a record-breaking 441,000 viewers, marking the platform’s most significant viewership for an AFL match to date.

The 2023 result was a significant improvement from 2022 when the Geelong Cats thrashed the Sydney Swans delivering a ratings low of 2.96 million viewers nationally. A mere 95,000 viewers watched last year on 7plus.

Collingwood’s thrilling four-point victory over Brisbane was not only an epic win but also garnered staggering viewership stats. In capital cities, the game commanded a 92.2% viewer share. When broken down demographically, there was a 94.8% viewer share among the 25 to 54 age bracket, and an even more impressive 96.7% share among the 16 to 39 age group.

In terms of city-specific data, Melbourne boasted a 97.4% share, whereas Sydney and Brisbane recorded 79.5% and 87.9% viewer shares, respectively.

“Seven’s live, free and exclusive coverage of the unmissable premiership decider reminds us of just how much we all love footy.

It’s the passion of the fans that elevates footy from being a sport to a unique spectacle that unites the nation,”

Articulated Managing Director Seven Melbourne and Head of Network Sport, Lewis Martin. Emphasising AFL’s significance in Australia, he added,

“The AFL is Australia’s number one winter sport, it’s a core part of our DNA, and Seven’s expert commentary, insights and coverage showcase the entertainment and exceptional competition of the AFL like no one else.”

From a commercial standpoint, Seven West Media Chief Revenue Officer, Kurt Burnette, remarked,

“Seven’s AFL coverage reached an incredible 13.77 million viewers this season, once again delivering unrivalled reach, attention and addressability on a massive scale, across every demographic and every screen.

Australia’s leading brands were showcased to 53% of Australians.” Burnette hinted at the network’s future prospects, citing the upcoming Bathurst 1000 and the changes to sports streaming rights in the coming years.

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To provide a snapshot of the viewership:

  • AFL Grand Final: 3.75 million national viewers
  • AFL Grand Final Presentations: 3.66 million national viewers
  • AFL Grand Final Pre-Match entertainment: 1.2 million national viewers

As per OzTAM’s 2023 survey, Seven Network leads both nationally and in capital cities. They’re also the frontrunners nationally in the 25 to 54s and 16 to 39s demographics.

AFL Grand Final Ratings History

The 2022 Grand Final which featured Geelong Cats thrashing the Sydney Swans delivering a ratings low of 2.96 million viewers nationally.

The 2021 AFL Grand Final between Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs from Perth Stadium achieved a national average audience of 4.16 million.

The 2020 AFL Grand Final between Richmond and Geelong which was played in Brisbane due to COVID delivered Seven a national audience of 3.812 million people (2.979 mil 5 City Metro).

In 2019 an average national audience of 2.939 Million tuned in to witness Richmond demolish the Giants by 89 points in their first Grand Final appearance.

The 2018 nail-biting finale between Collingwood and West Coast was watched by a national audience of 3.378 Million (2.601mil 5-City Metro).

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Richmond’s victory over the Adelaide Crows in the 2017 Grand Final delivered Seven an average national audience of 3.524 Million (2.680 mil 5-City Metro).

In 2012, the Sydney Swans defeated Hawthorn. The match remains as the highest rating Grand Final in the past ten years with an average national audience of 4.415 Million (3.196mil 5-City Metro). The audience for that day included 740,000 viewers in Sydney.

The 2016 Grand Final between the Western Bulldogs and Sydney Swans also delivered a ratings spike, with an average national audience of 4.089 Million (3.039mil 5-City Metro) including 534,000 viewers in Sydney.

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Kevin Perry
Kevin Perryhttps://tvblackbox.com.au/author-kevin-perry/
Senior Editor and Co-Owner of the TV Blackbox website, Kevin Perry is an experienced media commentator focused on TV Production, Consumer Tech, SVOD & Sports Broadcasting. Media enquiries please Call or Text 0428-275-111
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