TORONTO — The Bianca Boost continues for Canada’s sports cable networks.
TSN said Thursday that an average television audience of 852,000 viewers tuned in to watch rising Canadian tennis star Bianca Andreescu advance to her first ever Grand Slam semifinal. Andreescu beat Elise Mertens 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 in a Wednesday quarterfinal under the lights at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
TSN said it was the most-watched U.S. Open broadcast in network history.
The number eclipses the average of 594,100 viewers that watched the 19-year-old from Mississauga, Ont., defeat Serena Williams in the final of the Rogers Cup in Toronto last month on Sportsnet, though Wednesday’s match was in prime time on a weekday while the 19-minute Rogers Cup final was on a Sunday afternoon.
The big boost in television ratings puts tennis in the same ballpark as other major sports in Canada. By comparison, an average 482,000 viewers watched CFL game coverage on TSN heading into the league’s marquee Labour Day weekend contests.
Andreescu faced Belinda Bencic in a semifinal match Thursday night.