The number of viewers watching the BBC broadcast as Jeong Jang of South Korea birdied the 18th to win her first title at Royal Birkdale, peaked at 1.9 million with a further 1.6 million watching in the US.
Andy Salmon, chief executive of the LGU, said, “We are greatly encouraged by the surge in interest in this year’s championship. To see growth of almost 50% in the BBC ratings is tremendous and demonstrates the appeal of the ladies’ game.”
In addition to the large television audience, over half a million visits were made to www.lgu.org, the official LGU website, where users could follow hole-by-hole scoring and access a comprehensive range of statistical information.
The Ladies’ Golf Union has concluded an agreement with the BBC who have secured the UK television rights to broadcast the Women’s British Open until 2011.
Andy Salmon said, “We are delighted that the BBC will be televising the Women’s British Open for the next six years and thank them for their continued commitment to women’s golf.
“With the championship now committed to terrestrial television, we have achieved our aim of permitting the widest possible audience watch the world’s best players in action.”
The 2006 Women’s British Open will be played at Royal Lytham & St Annes and in 2007 will be played over the Old Course, St Andrews.
Ladies’ Golf Union www.lgu.org