The 2021 Super Rugby AU season has proven a hit with fans across Australia with record-breaking numbers tuning in on television, at games and at Rugby fields around the country.
Last weekend's action capped the regular-season round of Super Rugby AU regular season with the domestic television ratings up an average of 144% across the season year-on-year. These television audience figures do not include those who streamed on Stan Sport.
Rugby Australia confirmed the increase in ratings with a release on Monday stating the the 'at-match attendance has also surged with the competition seeing the biggest crowd in more than five years for the Round Eight clash between the Queensland Reds and the Brumbies at Suncorp Stadium.'
The up tick in interest in Super Rugby Australia has led to an increase of 16.4% in player registrations from the same time in 2019, the statement confirmed. According to the release, this is largely due to the greater broadcast reach as well as dedicated marketing campaigns, further Sporting Schools integrations for Rugby, an increased rollout of Get Into Rugby programs and more Rugby Sevens competition opportunities.
Rugby Australia Chief Executive Officer Andy Marinos said: “We’ve been thrilled with the television audience figures so far and can’t wait to see it build over the next fortnight and into Harvey Norman Super Rugby Trans-Tasman.
“I want to thank Mike Sneesby and Brent Williams as well as the rest of the team at Nine and Stan for their enthusiasm and passion for Harvey Norman Super Rugby AU. If the regular season was anything to go by, we are in for a spectacular Finals.
“Despite the snap lockdown, Perth was absolutely buzzing on Friday night after the Western Force’s victory over the Reds, and they will be heading to Canberra full of momentum and confidence against the defending Champions.
“The increased exposure has also directly benefited our community game with participation up 16.4% from the same time in 2019, and the seasons are only just beginning around the country.
“The coverage has also been fantastic for our sponsors and attracted new interest from potential partners as well, not just for Rugby Australia but the Australia Super Rugby sides and Clubs as well.
“And this is just the beginning! There’s an action-packed six weeks of Harvey Norman Super Rugby Trans-Tasman just around the corner with kick-off on 14 May before the Wallabies Test season,” Marinos said.