Mon, 06 Jul 2020

Turner: 'The Match' most-watched golf match in cable history

Field Level Media
26 May 2020, 08:40 GMT+10

No strangers to making history, the competitors in "The Match: Champions for Charity" made some TV history on Sunday.

According to numbers released by Turner Sports on Monday, the event that had Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning teamed up against Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady drew an average of 5.8 million viewers across four of its networks. That makes it the most-watched golf telecast in cable TV history, according to Turner.

The previous record was the 2010 Masters, during which 4.9 million viewers watched on ESPN as Tiger Woods' returned to competitive golf after news of his infidelity erupted into a scandal.

According to Turner, the peak viewership Sunday was from 5:45 to 6 p.m. ET, when 6.3 million average viewers tuned in. That was the time during which Brady responded to ridicule on social media and ribbing from celebrity analyst Charles Barkley by holing out from about 150 yards for a birdie on No. 7.

Played through heavy rain throughout the day, "The Match" raised $20 million for COVID-19 relief. Manning, the former Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos quarterback, and Woods won 1-up over Mickelson and Brady -- who earlier this spring signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after quarterbacking the New England Patriots to six Super Bowl titles.

The foursome competed at Medalist Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Fla., with the event shown on TNT, TBS, TruTV and HLN.

The previous Sunday, 2.35 million viewers watched Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson beat Rickie Fowler and Matthew Wolff in another exhibition event for charity, the TaylorMade Driving Relief at Seminole Golf Club in Juno Beach, Fla.

The PGA Tour is scheduled to return to competitive play June 11-14 at the Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth, Texas. As was the case with the two exhibition matches, no fans will be in attendance for the Charles Schwab Challenge.

--Field Level Media

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