Tracy fills in for Ray – again

Tracy
Grimshaw sits in for Ray Martin again on A Current Affair tonight
amid growing speculation that she’s to replace him next year.
Grimshaw also replaced Martin on Friday night, as Nine management
wonders if she can match the titan of the
airwaves at 6.30pm, Naomi Robson over on Seven’s Today Tonight.

So how
did Grimshaw do
on Friday night? ACA lost nationally and in Sydney (by just 1,000 after there was a 90,000 gap in favour of Seven
News), but won Melbourne, Brisbane (which is normal) and Adelaide. So all
up, no better than Ray, and certainly no worse than him, which would be what
Nine management would be
looking for.

Record audience for NRL grand final
The NRL
grand final produced a record audience for the Nine Network nationally and in
Sydney, but it
still fell short of the AFL Grand Final audience the previous
weekend. A total
of 2.569 million people watched the game, much bigger than the 2.1 million to
watch the Canterbury Bulldogs win last year, or 2.351 million that watched Penrith’s
upset win in 2003.

More
than 1.186 million people watched in Sydney, the
biggest audience since the Oztam ratings system
started in 2001 and with the presence of the North Queensland team in last
night’s game, it was also a record audience in Brisbane with a huge 778,000 people
watching. Even in
Melbourne it was the most watched program on the
night with an average of 514,000 people tuning in. But
it was still well short of the AFL’s grand final audience, with more than 3.39
million people tuning to see the Swans win.

Another weekly ratings win for Nine
Well,
victory again to Nine in Week 40, thanks to the NRL Footy Show on
Thursday night and Sunday night’s big effort. Over the week Nine’s margin narrowed to only 2.5% (29.9% to 27.4% for
Seven), as its share fell all week from Sunday’s 37.6%, but it still won all markets, bar Perth, over the
week.

Last night’s TV
ratings

The Winners Nine, thanks to NRL Grand Final. A record
audience of 2.569 million people, and in Sydney, 1.186 million. Everything else
was screen filler material. Nine News did well with 1.864 million (down around
200,000 on a week earlier).
There wasn’t a turn-on to Nine because of the Bali bombings last night like
there was earlier in the morning for Sunday and Business Sunday. Seven News,
Australian Idol and the first Law and Order Criminal Intent repeat were
the other programs to attract more than a million viewers last
night.
The Losers

No real losers, the Nine’s NRL coverage was simply too
powerful. The presentation after the game was the third most watched program
(1.397 million) and the pre-match entertainment at 6.30pm was fourth
with 1.291 million (though down 570,000 from the
News).

News & CA Nine News as usual on a Sunday night, Seven News did well with
1.242 million, about normal. The ABC’s 7pm news was hit by the Grand
Final starting just after 7pm and its audience was down under a million
viewers at 997,000.
The Stats Nine with a massive 43.0% share, from Ten with 20.6%,
Seven with 16.9%, the ABC with 14.6% and SBS with 4.9%. In Sydney Nine’s share
was a huge 60.0%, in Brisbane it was 55.0% and Nine even won Melbourne with 30.6%. Ten won Adelaide and
Perth.
Glenn Dyer’s
comments

Nine’s week. A great game and great figures. Now for the test
of the floundering Australian cricket team in three one day day/night games
against the World team, starting Wednesday. A test of the cricketing public’s
ability to forgive and forget, and whether a world team has any appeal for
viewers. Tonight it’s the final prime time outing for Nine’s drama
series, The Alice, and that’s the underlying story. Forget the stunts, it’s the
regular prime time programming where Nine remains vulnerable. Ten is merely in
it for Idol and a couple of other new shows that are designed to keep up its 18
to 39 cred. Seven has to lift on Sunday, Thursday and Saturday
nights.