Yesterday we had a technical glitch that prevented us from publishing Wednesday night’s TV Ratings. Catch them on our website here. Last night’s ratings:

The Winners: Seven News was again tops with 2.219 million viewers, with its prime time games coverage from 7pm second with 2.111 million. Today Tonight was third with 1.967 million and the 5pm to 6pm coverage was 4th with 1.710 million. The 7pm ABC News was 5th with 1.108 million (another solid result), in front of Nine News at 6pm with 1.061 million and A Current Affair in 7th spot with 1.050 million. Nine’s Two and a Half Men repeat at 7.30pm averaged 1.036 million and Ten’s NCIS repeat at 8.30pm averaged 1.028 million. Seven’s afternoon games coverage (up to 5pm) averaged 1.003 million and the late night coverage (after 10.30pm) averaged 964,000 — that’s doing better than any other part of the coverage. The second episode of NCIS on Ten at 9.30pm averaged 928,000. Grumpy Old Women on the ABC at 8pm, 884,000. Grand Designs on the ABC at 8.30pm, 856,000 — respectable.

The Losers: No one really last night. The lure of the games is too much for Ten and Nine to resist, although Ten is actually doing a bit better than Nine in holding its audience. With its 16 to 39 year old to fall back on, that’s not so surprising. Tuesday night isn’t the ABC’s strongest, but it is the most original non-sport alternative.

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and in every market as did Today Tonight. The 7.30 Report was solid with 839,000 viewers, Lateline averaged 197,000, Lateline Business, 145,000. Ten News, 687,000; the late News/Sports Tonight a very solid 413,000. SBS News at 6.30pm, 240,000. 7am Sunrise, 448,000, 7am Today 305,000 and doing well. Sunrise hasn’t got a huge kick from the games so far because of the time difference.

The Stats: Seven won all demos with 44.9% from Nine with 18.1%, Ten with 18.0%, the ABC with 14.0% and SBS with 5.1%. Seven won everywhere and leads the week 43.3% with daylight second. In regional areas a similar result: Prime/7Qld with 44.2%, Southern Star (Ten), 19.6%, WIN/NBN with 18.9%, the ABC on 12.8% and SBS with 4.6%.

Glenn Dyer’s comments: More games joy and agony last night. Who would have thought anything outside the first Tuesday of November would be as gripping as some of the three-day horse events we have seen over the past three days? What I saw of the jumping was gripping TV. The swimming was pretty good, the men’s rowing eight dramatic. It’s all the stuff you want to see in sport on TV. There’s the men’s time trial for the road cycling today (3.30pm Sydney time) and the track competition starts soon; the athletics is next week and more and more it seems as though Australia will fall short of all those optimistic statements about record medal hauls. While it’s nice to have a bit of stuff for the trophy cabinet, it’s unrealistic to expect success because officials and inflated sports journalists say it will happen.

The competition in swimming from South Korea, Japan and France is at a level much higher than four years ago: the Australians and Americans are under challenge, which has made for a great competition. Tuesday’s swimming finals was of a standard we haven’t seen before … if Michael Phelps wasn’t there, the story would be the eclipse of the US. Duncan Armstrong seems to have backed off a bit in his commentary with Bruce McAveny. I look forward to Bruce’s calling of the athletics, especially the big events.

Seven is still getting solid audiences of two million plus: will that last into next week when Australians won’t be doing well in the athletics? Tonight will be a test. There’s the ABC with Spicks and Specks and perhaps Freezing, and before them, The New Inventors. The Hollowmen have gone for a holiday. Nine rested McLeod’s Daughters at 8.30pm. Will it return at 8.30pm after the games? Ten has the US version of So You Think You Can Dance and a repeat of House. Nine also has a repeat of Funniest Home Videos at 7.30pm. Oh dear.

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports

Peter Fray

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