Maori Television is the most watched free-to-air broadcaster for Rugby World Cup 2011 and its total cumulative audience rose to more than two million individual viewers, the largest for any broadcaster covering the tournament.
Ratings figures released today show more people watched the quarter-finals action on Maori Television than on the other two free-to-air channels.
“The shared quarter finals were always going to be the test of where Maori Television sits against the competition. The results show New Zealanders trust us to give them the viewing experience they want for Rugby World Cup 2011,” says Maori Television chief executive Jim Mather.
Maori Television showed live coverage of all the quarter-finals. Live coverage of the England v France and New Zealand v Argentina games was shared with One and TV3.
Mr Mather said the All Blacks’ win over Argentina gained an audience of 501,500 and represented Maori Television’s second biggest audience of the tournament so far.
“What is particularly pleasing is that our audience actually grew from the exclusive free-to-air game between Australia and South Africa to the All Blacks game which was shared by all channels,” says Mather.
“This tells us people like what we’re doing, we’re on the right track.”
Maori Television’s ratings for live games have also been far higher than predicted by industry specialists prior to the tournament.
Maori Television is the lead free-to-air broadcaster of Rugby World Cup 2011 and has live coverage of both semi-finals and the grand final on 23 October.
Maori Television is available on Freeview channel 5 and Sky TV channel 19. It’s also available through the old analogue network with a UHF aerial. If viewers receive Prime TV by aerial, they should be able to tune in to Maori Television. For further assistance, call the tune-in helpline 0800 MA TATOU (0800 62 82 868).
Te Reo is on Freeview channel 24 (a Freeview satellite digital receiver plus a satellite dish are required) and on Sky TV channel 59.
Maori Television is the only free-to-air channel covering all 48 games and is putting forward New Zealand’s largest commentary team across the Maori Television (English broadcast) and Te Reo (te reo Maori broadcast) channels. The 27-strong expert team includes three former Rugby World Cup team captains and a combined total of more than 200 international test caps.
For the full Rugby World Cup 2011 coverage schedule visit www.maoritelevision.com
Maori Television Rugby World Cup 2011 commentary team
Maori Television: Te Arahi Maipi, Glen Osborne, Wayne ‘Buck’ Shelford, Keith Quinn, Gavin Hastings OBE, Peter FitzSimons, Mark Ella, Kees Meeuws, Pat Lam, Norm Hewitt, Tony Marsh, Karl Te Nana, Inoke Afeaki
Te Reo channel: Hemana Waaka, Julian Wilcox, Wairangi Koopu, Te Whetu McCorkindale, Tumamao Harawira, Te Kauhoe Wano, Bailey Mackey, Hohepa Mclean, Peeni Henare, Te Ori Paki, Brian Morris, Tame Te Rangi, Kotuku Tibble, Tamati Waaka