Those beauty shots of the Country Club of Charleston and the Lowcountry during the U.S. Women's Open golf tournament looked great on Fox Sports last weekend.
But a relatively small slice of the viewing public watched South Korea's Jeongeun Lee6 win the first $1 million first prize in the 74-year history of the Open.
The final round of the U.S. Women's Open on Sunday earned a 0.5 rating and 728,000 viewers on Fox Sports, down from the previous two years and the lowest ever for a final round in the tournament, according to Sports Media Watch.
The U.S. Women's Open may have experienced a reverse Tiger effect, as superstar Tiger Woods was playing at the same time in the final round of the PGA Tour Memorial tournament. The Memorial drew a 2.1 rating and 2.96 million viewers.
As recently as three years ago, the U.S. Women's Open boasted an 0.9 rating and 1.31 million viewers, according to Sports Media Watch. In 2014, when Michelle Wie won the U.S. Women's Open at Pinehurst, the final round drew a 1.4 rating and 2.04 million viewers on NBC.
But ratings for the U.S. Women's Open have slumped in recent years.
In 2018, the final round drew an 0.6 rating and 878,000 viewers; in 2017, those numbers were 0.6 and 790,000.
By comparison, the final round of the Augusta National Women's Amateur on NBC in April drew a rating of 0.9 and 1.36 million viewers.