England's Draw With France Draws 12 million Viewers
England's 1-1 draw with France in their opening Euro 2012 match gave England's ITV1 "a welcome ratings boost" on Monday afternoon, according to Jason Deans of the London GUARDIAN. The match attracted an average audience of more than 12 million viewers. Live match coverage averaged 12.3 million viewers and a 56.3% audience share over two hours from 5pm GMT. That was the "biggest of the tournament so far." The match drew a five minute peak of 15.3 million viewers toward the end of the second half -- ITV1's "highest so far this year." Full BBC1 coverage averaged 5.3 million and a 22.4% share over three hours from 7pm GMT (GUARDIAN, 6/12). MEDIA WEEK's Mark Banham reported that "challengers to the England versus France match fell by the wayside" during the match. The best performer on BBC1 during the match was "the regional news and weather in the build up to the Ukraine and Switzerland match," which recorded an average audience of 4.1 million with a 16.7% viewer share at 6:30pm GMT (MEDIAWEEK.co.uk, 6/12). The WALL STREET JOURNAL blog Emerging Europe's Leos Rousek noted that Czech viewership was down for the Czech Republic's game against Russia. Some 804,000 viewers older than 15 years of age, or 24.3% of the total audience at the time, watched the match broadcast live by the Czech TV CT-4 sports channel. However, that "was no match" to the combined 1.66 million viewers, or 47% of the total, opting for feature films showed on two other competing local television channels at the same time (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 6/12). Meanwhile, in London, Robin Scott-Elliot notes part of the "TV appeal of a finals is the BBC v ITV contest, and the challenge ITV face to come close to denting the corporation's traditional advantage was obvious from the moment the BBC aired an excellent film of Denmark's shock triumph in 1992 to preview Saturday's game with the Dutch." This time ITV has "made the effort to base [its] coverage in Warsaw, while the BBC" has stayed in Manchester (London INDEPENDENT, 6/11).
GOOD NUMBERS IN CANADA: TSN and TSN2 during the opening weekend's six games drew an average of 707,000 viewers. That is more than double the average audience for the first six games of Euro 2008 (265,000 on TSN and Sportsnet). TSN drew 1.1 million viewers for Spain-Italy on Sunday (Bell Media).