It’s hard to imagine it’s a stretch to say that the NRL’s grand final is the most watched sporting event of the year.
That’s thanks to the huge interest in the game among locals, with fans watching on the biggest screens in their homes.
What’s more, the game has seen the most ratings of any major event on television, making it one of the biggest and most watched sports events in the world.
But that’s not all.
We’re also seeing the greatest audience growth on television and digital, which has resulted in a number of high-profile games being shown on the big screens in locales across Australia.
There are some unique viewing experiences to consider, but for the purposes of this article, we’ll only be focusing on the most-watched games from the NRL in 2018.
The 2017 grand final was one of 2016’s biggest draws, with crowds of more than 3.5 million, according to ESPN.
That was the highest-ever audience, according the company.
The biggest crowds were recorded for the first time at ANZ Stadium, with 4.8 million people watching the match.
This year’s final saw the biggest crowd ever at ANR Stadium, at 4.5m.
It was also the largest crowd ever for the ANZ Oval, which had a capacity of around 6,000.
The NRL also saw its biggest ever audience on TV on Thursday night, with more than 8.5million watching on TV, according an ESPN report.
The game will also be the first major rugby league match to be shown on a massive screen at a national sporting event.
It will be broadcast on Channel Seven, which is a big deal for the game in Australia.
It’s a huge deal, too, given the number of people watching in local areas.
ABC Sport’s Darren Conway tweeted that over a million people tuned in for the NRL Grand Final, with the crowd in Melbourne averaging more than 6.4m.
The audience has been growing since the grand final drew in record numbers.
Last year’s grand finals drew a crowd of more, but the next three were smaller.
This year’s is likely to be even bigger, with Melbourne’s crowd of around 8.4 million expected to be the largest.
The games were played in Australia’s most popular city, Melbourne, with about 40 per cent of viewers attending the match in one night.
That number has doubled to more than 50 per cent, according Nielsen.
The ABC’s Darren Connery said that while the crowds are impressive, the biggest draw of the grand finals is likely still the game itself.
“The biggest draw is probably the fact that we’re the biggest game in the NRL,” he said.
“And the crowds have been growing over the years.”
We asked the NRL for a breakdown of the crowds, and the official comment was: “The grand final draw is a record.
The most crowds at any sporting event in Australia has always been the grand finish in Sydney in 2011.
This is the first-ever game in which we have a record crowd at home.”
But the NRL did not comment on the attendance figures or the number on TV at ANU Stadium.