NRL crowds, ratings up for 2009 - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

NRL crowds, ratings up for 2009

17/06/2009 06:51:31 PM Comments (0)

The NRL is trumpeting an increase in crowds and television ratings for 2009.

The league says crowds are up five per cent on the same time last year and have totalled 1,688,948 so far in 2009.

It says game one of the State of Origin series reached a record average of 2.322 million viewers across the five capital cities, 177,000 better than the previous best, for game three last year.

Weekly television ratings for NRL games are up 21.7 per cent in Brisbane and 14.2 per cent in Sydney.

And club memberships have grown 27 per cent with nine of the league's 16 clubs achieving record numbers.

Despite the massive publicity generated by the Cronulla group sex scandal and sexual assault charges laid against Manly's Brett Stewart earlier this year, the league also claims an increase in the number of women interested in rugby league.

"While the economic climate has been tough and while many people predicted we would see a drop in numbers, there have been a lot of positives and each week the NRL players are lifting themselves in a way that has inspired fans," NRL chief executive David Gallop said.

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