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U.S. Open Ratings Hit The Net on USA Network

9/04/2007 9:58 AM Eastern

Early ratings returns from USA Network are down, but in line with the channel’s expectations.

Over the Grand Slam tourney’s first four days, Aug. 27-30, USA averaged a 1.06 household rating and 1.3 million in viewers. Those numbers were off 14% and 15%, respectively, compared with the first four nights of the 2006 tournament, according to Nielsen Media Research data.

The characters network, which also saw a 9% drop to 588,000 viewers 25 to 54 against the comparable year-ago period, benefited in 2006 from the swan song of tennis icon Andre Agassi, who played twice in primetime during the first and second round of that tournament. USA was even among persons 18 to 49 with 503,000 of those watchers.

“It’s about what we expected,” said NBC Universal spokesman Brad Bernstein. “We don’t have the novelty effect that we had last year.”

Extending into daytime, the Nielsen damage was less for USA over the first four days of its daytime coverage. The total viewership average from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (ET) was off 6% to 509,000, as the household average slipped 9% to a 0.55 mark. On the demo front, adults 25 to 54 dipped 1% to 203,000, but grew 2% to 167,000 watchers aged 18 to 49. 

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