WC: Ratings of non-India matches stay a concern

MUMBAI: The cricket World Cup is showing the first signs of softening in ratings compared to its previous edition in 2007, though in terms of reach it is far ahead.

The first 20 matches have yielded an average TVR of 1.92, much less than the average TVR of 2.48 that was recorded in the same period of the 2007 World Cup.

However, India has played a match less compared to the earlier edition. For the two matches involving Bangladesh and England, the matches clocked a TVR of 7.47 and 10.97 respectively.

In the 2007 World Cup, India had played three matches out of 20 and clocked a TVR of 8.85 against Bangladesh, 10.10 against Bermuda and 12.06 against Sri Lanka.

The epic India-England match, which ended in a tie, is the top-rated contest so far as an astronomical 82 million viewers tuned in. The match got a peak TVR of 20.96 and an average TVR of 10.97, according to data from Tam Sports (All India, C&S 4+).

Star Cricket earned a TVR of 5.3 for that match while Star Sports, which has a Hindi feed, got a TVR of 2.75. Doordarshan managed a TVR of 1.95 and ESPN a rating of 1.07.
Experts believe that a combination of one-sided matches and rain in a crucial encounter between Australia and Sri Lanka resulted in the average ratings for the World Cup falling below 2 TVR for the first time. While the contest between Australia and Sri Lanka got a 0.10 TVR, 23 million viewers tuned in for it, showing that there was interest to watch the duel.

Interestingly, the average ratings for the non-India matches have stood flat at 1.10 TVR, like in the previous World Cup.
A media buyer expressed disappointment at the fact that the non-India match ratings have stayed flat. "While the reach has gone up, we were hoping that since the event was in India there would be added interest that would boost ratings," said a buyer on condition of anonymity.
The England versus Ireland encounter, which the Irish won in a famous run chase, has fared well. It got a TVR of 1.78 and a reach of 32 million.

Pakistan continues to attract interest among viewers, even if they are playing against a weak team. Their match against Canada got a TVR of 1.69, while 38 million viewers tuned in.

In 2007, a Pakistan match against Zimbabwe got a TVR of 1.01 and a reach of 21 million.

This time only 14 million viewers tuned in to see a one-sided Netherlands versus South Africa match which got a TVR of 0.40. In 2007, a match between South Africa and Scotland got a TVR of 0.55. Eighteen million viewers had tuned in for that match.

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