Off the Wall

On the day even one of the Souths Rabbitohs has cast doubts about the future of the club, there is some welcome news for rugby league, and its future.

The all-important ratings for Wednesday nights State of Origin match were the highest for an Origin match in the history of the OzTam ratings system, with 2.092 million fans across the five mainland capital cities watching the game. A very healthy 1.270 million viewers watched in regional communities.

These ratings give the game numbers roughly equal to the ratings for recent AFL grand finals which are shown live nationally. The Origin game was shown on delay in Adelaide and Perth.

In a particularly welcome sign, the Sydney figures were up around 40,000 on last year - a very good outcome given that the Blues were supposed to have little chance of winning! The Brisbane figures were down on last year (surprising) but still a very impressive 63.6 per cent audience share.

Melbourne was down, and that