Each Wednesday we take a look at the world of Irish sports media, the stories, the numbers and the organisations that are, more than ever before, our window on the world of sport…


Ireland against England will always produce a big number of viewers but the heat of competition in the Guinness Six Nations is clearly more intense in the spring than for last Saturday’s clash at Twickenham.

The average number of viewers for the 3 PM kick-off was 500,000 with a peak of 564,000. This was 50 per cent of those watching TV at the time which is testament to the appeal of Rugby on a day of blistering and diverse sport across multiple channels.

Back in 2007, a peak audience of 1,207,000 tuned in to watch the same two countries in the unusual setting of Croke Park. That was 70 per cent of the audience watching at the time but with no other sporting attraction.

Different times and a different world for sports broadcasting, but encouraging to see the numbers holding up so well when you consider what else was happening.


A peak audience of 388,000 was tuned into Galway against Tipperary on RTÉ 2as the pre-match programme was underway for the rugby on RTÉ 1.

The average audience for the game was 254,000 representing an audience share of 37 per cent in the early afternoon slot.

The sport continued through the evening with an average of 388,000, 37 per cent of the available audience, tuning in for Dublin against Meath in the Leinster Men’s Football Final, also on RTÉ 2 with a peak of 421,000.

That followed on from an average of 254,000 who had tuned in early to watch the commemoration of the 14 victims of Bloody Sunday.


Repeats are normally a dirty word in broadcasting but when it is a repeat of history from 100 years ago and the ending of droughts that lasted 85 and 23 years respectively, it will be watched.

RTÉ’s Sunday game Live drew an average of 339,000 and a peak of 421,000 viewers for Tipperary’s win over Cork and as a sense of upset in Ulster as well began to materialise the average of 380,000 watching Cavan beat Donegal peaked itself at 459,000.


The top five programmes on the RTÉ Player last weekend were all sporting with the rugby topping the charts and gathering 37,345 unique visitors.


NBC has extended its broadcast partnership with World Athletics through to 2029, covering five editions of the World Athletics Championships and other major events.

NBC also holds the exclusive US rights to the Olympic and Paralympic Games through to 2032.

“Track and field is a cornerstone of the Olympic programme, and with the World Championships coming to the US for the first time ever in Eugene in 2022, and a group of young and talented American stars on the rise, we couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity to deliver these events and tell their stories for years to come,” said NBC Olympics President Gary Zenkel.

Join us every Friday morning for our popular and essential guide to everything you can watch each weekend; every Wednesday for our Weekly Media Matters column; and every day for the latest on the commercial world of Irish sport.

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