Serena Williams shatters another ceiling even in retirement with viewing record
Serena Williams last career match, her loss to Ajla Tomljanovic in the third round of the US Open, set a new record for the most watched telecast in the history of ESPN.
The 23-time Slam champion played the 1,014th tour level singles match of her career in front of a sellout crowd on Arthur Ashe Stadium, as well as a record ESPN audience that peaked at 6.9 million viewers, bowing out against the world number 46 7-5, 6-7 (4-7), 6-1, just over 25 years on from her US Open debut at the age of 17.
The broadcast averaged 4.8 million viewers, surpassing the previous record of 3.9 million held by the 2012 Wimbledon final between Roger Federer and Andy Murray, the seventh title at SW19 for the Swiss legend.
Serena played four matches at the 2022 US Open, three in singles and one in doubles alongside sister Venus, with her appearances a large factor in bringing up viewership through the first five days of the tournament to an average of 1.1. million viewers on ESPN networks, up 101% compared to 2021 and a record for the broadcaster since their coverage began in 2009.
#SerenaWilliams‘ #USOpen swan song last Friday night was ESPN’s most-watched tennis telecast on record
🎾 Serena’s 3rd round match | 4.8M viewers on avg., 6.9M peak
🎾 Thru 5 days, ESPN’s most-watched @usopen (coverage began ’09)
More: https://t.co/g0ZpWMUnfB pic.twitter.com/lpHZJfkf7c
— ESPN PR (@ESPNPR) September 6, 2022
🎾 Free >> Join our legendary newsletter
🎾 Join >> Receive $700/£600 of tennis gear from the Tennishead CLUB
🎾 Social >> Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & YouTube
🎾 Read >> World’s best tennis magazine
🎾 Watch >> How to enjoy ATP/WTA/Slam tennis on TV
🎾 Shop >> Lowest price tennis gear from our trusted partner