The Seven Network has never won the first six weeks of official ratings and the Nine Network has never lost the first six weeks of ratings.

But that’s what happened last week: Seven had its narrowest victory of the year so far and Nine couldn’t get past, despite winning four nights.

It was a pretty abject performance by Nine in the end and with the AFL kicking in this weekend for Nine and Ten, it will be a while before Nine gets another close finish.

Seven won with a share of 28.9% between 6pm and midnight. That was down on the week before’s 30.1% but enough to keep Nine second with 27.7% (unchanged from a week earlier). Ten was third with 21.9% (20.2%), the ABC was on 16.3% (15.8%) and SBS was on 5.3% (5.0%).

Nine won Sunday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Seven won the three other nights. Nine won Melbourne and Seven won Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.

The wins in Sydney and Brisbane were especially strong for Seven because Nine had the NRL Footy Show and then the NRL on Friday night in both cities while the AFL was a week away from starting. The AFL Footy Show pushed Nine to a narrow win in Melbourne.

Friday was won by Nine 28.6% to 28.4%. That was because wins in Sydney and Brisbane thanks to the NRL. But in Melbourne Seven was the winner and the AFL game this Friday night will reinforce that dominance.

Seven News and Today Tonight won last week over Nine, as did Sunrise. But Sunrise‘s audience did not get above 400,000 at all last week. The gap over Today narrowed noticeably and then grew late in the week. Sarah Murdoch finishes up at Today this Friday.

The ABC did well with its NSW election coverage in Sydney which it won easily and probably cost Seven a national win on the night: Nine won 25.4% to 25.3% nationally. The ABC was on 23.4%.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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