An India-Pakistan cricket match live broadcast can overpower any sports genre programme on Indian television. The Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) TV ratings for week 39 (September 22-28, 2018) establish the fact beyond doubt. The India-Pakistan Super 4 game in the Asia Cup, won overwhelmingly by India with a nine-wicket verdict and 10 overs to spare, has registered 9% more impressions than the exciting India-Bangladesh final, which Ravindra Jadeja won for India of the last ball of the match.
Hindi broadcast of the India-Pakistan Super 4 game on Star Sports 1 Hindi is the most-watched sports genre show for the week with 641,482,000 impressions with the final (12,360,000 impressions) coming next. The two games, simulcast on free to air DD Sports, also hold the third and fourth positions respectively, followed by the India-Afghanistan tied match (7,660,000 impressions) on Star Sports 1 Hindi.
Asia Cup cricket live broadcast also consolidated the Star Sports position in the Top 5 sports genre channels for the week. Star Sports 1 Hindi at the No. 1 position has registered almost 30% more impressions over the previous week ratings. ‘Cricket broadcast in the national interest’ also enabled DD Sports to hold on to its second positon with increased eyeballs. Star Sports 1, which broadcast the Asia Cup world feed with English commentary stayed third as there has been no change in the top 5 list, except for Sony Ten 1 losing out some eyeballs in the fourth position.
It will be interesting to watch how the next week fares for Star Sports and Sony Sports cluster. Star will be banking heavily on the Indian Super League ratings, while Sony is bound to suffer some dent following after DTH platform Tata Sky has dropped the network channels from its beam over commercial disputes.