The Mumbai Indians vs Chennai Super Kings match on Saturday last has set an audience record for the Indian Premier League opener across all 13 seasons.
Board of Control for Cricket in India president Sourav Ganguly’s prediction of a record audience for the IPL 2020 seems to be coming true. The season opener has reportedly registered an average rating of 10.4, as per the unofficial data from Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India for the cable and satellite target group of 15+ M, ABC, All India Urban.
The ratings for week 37 will be released on Thursday, September 24, but the sportsnews.in claims to have accessed the data from sources. It shows a more than 31% surge in audience ratings in comparison to the league opener last year.
BCCI secretary Jay Shah has claimed that the IPL opener was watched by more than 20 crore people. “Opening match of #Dream11IPL sets a new record! As per BARC, an unprecedented 20crore people tuned in to watch the match. Highest ever opening day viewership for any sporting league in any country- no league has ever opened as big as this,” Shah Tweeted.
Opening match of #Dream11IPL sets a new record!
As per BARC, an unprecedented 20crore people tuned in to watch the match. Highest ever opening day viewership for any sporting league in any country- no league has ever opened as big as this. @IPL @SGanguly99 @UShanx @DisneyPlusHS
— Jay Shah (@JayShah) September 22, 2020
The IPL 2019 inaugural tie, also between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians, had reportedly registered an average rating of 7.9. This time it is up to 10.4.
Star Sports network was confident of gaining in the television audience following the decision to put the live streaming of the IPL on Disney+ Hotstar behind the paywall.
Despite the paywall, Disney+ Hotstar too has registered 8.4 million peak concurrent viewership for the IPL opener on Saturday. But a chunk of the OTT traffic is certainly diverted to Star Sports.
Star Sports is expecting over 550 million LIVE audiences for the IPL 2020. The beginning is an indicator that the IPL host broadcaster has make a giant stride in that direction.
Despite all the economic threats of the COVID-19 pandemic, Star Sports was able sell off 95% of its IPL 2020 sponsorship and advertisement inventory, aggregating over ₹ 3,100 crores.
IPL 2020 is being played in the UAE as India is reeling under the impact of the massive COVID-19 blast in the country with the number of daily cases rising up to 97,000.