The finale of the 2011 Women’s World Cup scored strong numbers for ESPN.
The previous high was a 3.2 for the 1999 United States/Brazil semifinal.
For comparison purposes, the 1999 United States/China Women’s World Cup final drew a 13.3 overnight on broadcast network ABC.
The 8.6 overnight puts the Women’s World Cup final ahead of several marquee sporting events — including the MLB All-Star Game (7.9), the Daytona 500 (8.2), the Fiesta (6.7), Orange (7.1) and Sugar (8.4) Bowls, Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final (5.7), and every game of the Heat/Bulls NBA Eastern Conference Finals (low of 7.2, high of 7.7).
Last year’s Spain/Netherlands World Cup final drew a 9.9 overnight on broadcast network ABC (8.6 when pre-match coverage is included). Keep in mind last year’s World Cup matches also aired on Univision.
(This year’s numbers from USA Today)