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Jamie Durie Television Battle

Jamie Durie Television Battle

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CHANNEL 7 has won the first round in its Jamie Durie-inspired ratings fight with Channel 9.

Durie crossed from Nine to Seven in controversy at the start of 2007 and Seven on Sunday made the daring move of pitting his new show, Australia's Best Backyards, against Durie's Backyard Blitz on Nine.

The bold programming strategy has paid off for Seven, with Sunday's premiere episode of Australia's Best Backyards attracting 1.4 million viewers nationally.

Blitz had 1.1 million viewers on what was a highly competitive night in the ratings.

Nine was shocked when Seven pursued a "Durie v Durie" ratings battle because Blitz had been performing well in the Sunday timeslot.

Nine announced at the end of last year it was axing Blitz, but the network was keen to re-sign Durie.

Nine tried hard to keep the celebrity landscaper and was bitterly disappointed when he opted to jump ship to Seven.

Before leaving Australia for a work trip to the US, Durie admitted it was "kind of weird" Nine had decided to run the remaining episodes of Blitz.

Australia's Best Backyards and Blitz beat Sunday's 6.30pm edition of Big Brother, which drew a million viewers.

Big Brother's later double live eviction show managed 1.4 million viewers.

While Ten maintains it's happy with Big Brother's performance, Sunday night's show was down 300,000 viewers on the corresponding episode last year
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