The Winners: MasterChef was again the star with its biggest ever audience of 1.924 million people for Ten. Seven News averaged 1.494 million for the hour from 6pm. Thank God You’re Here finished on Seven at 8.30pm with 1.374 million. A bit low, but the Ashes Test cricket soaked up quite a few spare viewers between 7.30pm and 9pm. Nine News was 4th with 1.338 million, Criminal Minds 5th with 1.131 million for Seven at 9pm and A Current Affair was on 1.131 million. Today Tonight was at 7pm with 1.058 million. Spicks and Specks averaged 1.058 million for the ABC at 8.30pm and 8th spot. Next was the new Simpsons episode on Ten at 8pm with 1.031 million and Nine’s Michael Jackson special at 7.30pm averaged 1.014 million. The Chaser at 9pm averaged 992,000.

The Losers: House on Ten at 9.30pm: 590,000. Fading away. It was a repeat, but couldn’t compete with the cricket and Michael Jackson on Seven and Nine. Law And Order SVU on Ten at 8.30pm, 767,000. Hurt by the ABC and the cricket.

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and in every market but Melbourne, but it went for an hour to 7pm, so comparisons are not strictly accurate. Likewise with TT which started at 7pm and ran up against MasterChef and finished second. Seven News had more viewers than Nine News and ACA. Ten News averaged 956,000, the late News/Sports Tonight, 314,000. Nine’s late News, 329,000. The 7pm ABC News, 948,000, The 7.30 Report, 772,000. Lateline, 241,000, Lateline Business, 134,000. SBS News, 171,000, the 10pm SBS News, 535,000. 7am Sunrise, 393,000, 7am Today up to 339,000.

The Stats: Seven won clearly 6pm to midnight All People with 25.7% (27.4%) and Nine was second with 22.5% (26.3%), from Ten with 21.8% (24.9%), the ABC with 15.5% (17.4%) and SBS on 13.4% (4.0%). Seven won all five metro markets. In Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, Nine was third. Seven leads the week 0n 28.8% from Ten on 25.0% and Nine on 22.9%. In regional areas a win to Prime/7Qld with 27.0%, from Southern Cross (Ten) with 23.0%, WIN/NBN with 199.8%, the ABC on 17.0% and SBS on 13.1%.

Glenn Dyer’s comments: The Test cricket had a definite impact on TV viewing last night, cutting that on the other networks quite noticeably. In fact Seven’s share fell less than Nine, Ten and the ABC’s. The roughly half a million viewers across the five hours from around 7pm to 12.30am was actually a bit nastier than would seem, because SBS’s coverage was ladened with commercials.

In the current poor environment for TV ads, the ads revenue spent on SBS could have ended up on Seven, Ten and Nine. SBS already carries ads in its programs, but the higher rating cricket would have enabled SBS to drag in more money from advertisers. Such is the softness of the market at the moment, that the combination of the Test cricket and the Tour De France will have an impact on the revenues for the other networks for three weeks (and a bit longer for the tests which last for five weeks).

If the Australia and England are two tests all, then SBS could strike a small gold mine for the fifth match. The cricket also rated well in regional areas. SBS’s prime share of 13.1% in regional areas nearly matched the 13.4% in the five metro markets. SBS’s Late News averaged 535,000 at 10pm. On Foxtel in the five capital cities (the same as SBS), Session one of the cricket averaged 151,000 and session two, 91,000. So a clear win to SBS.

Seven and Nine also bored viewers with another night of Whacko coverage. It didn’t do all that well. Seven News went for an hour to 7pm and won well, then Today Tonight had half an hour. Nine had coverage at 7.30pm and Seven had more coverage around 10 pm. The 7.30pm coverage on Nine averaged 1.014 million the 10pm coverage on Seven averaged 747,000 for a thing called Living With Michael Jackson (that’s a nonsense isn’t it?). Nine’s Michael Jackson In Concert later in the night averaged 854,000. Nine’s overloading of its schedule last night with Michael Jackson saw it go backwards. Ten and Seven shares the demos, Nine was again left out.

THISafternoon fell to 202,000 on Nine at 4.30pm. Hmmm, is that the smell of napalm at Willoughby?

Despite reports in the Sydney media that Chris Bath will do the Vega breakfast shift from November 26 to Jan 9, Seven says she isn’t.

TONIGHT: AFL and NRL Footy Shows and Getaway on Nine, but watch for SBS’s cricket coverage to put a dent in those broadcasts, especially the Footy Shows. MasterChef will do well for Ten and is the highlight again of the night. Seven has Ghost Whisperer and Grey’s Anatomy for those viewers not wrapped in cricket. Ten also has a Law and Order CI episode.

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports