India Breaks World Cup Viewership Record As 47Mn Watch First Four Matches, 45% Of Them Are Women

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The Fifa World Cup telecast on channels across the Sony Pictures Network India (SPN) has had a good start, as 19.3 million people tuned in to watch the inaugural match between Saudi Arabia and Russia, the host country. 

The matches are being telecast on SONY TEN 2, SONY TEN 3 and SONY ESPN channels and live-streamed on SonyLIV app and website. The Fifa World Cup Russia opened with a cumulative reach (total number of people who saw the tournament for at least one minute) of 47.3 million viewers on the first two days of the tournament (four matches) on TV and digital. This includes viewership and engagement on highlights and surrounds content. Individually, TV clocked over 41 million viewers during the World Cup telecast and over 6 million viewers viewed the tournament on SonyLIV, according to Broadcast Audience Research Council of India. 

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States of Kerala, West Bengal, North East and Maharashtra are the top ones for viewership. Women contributed to 45 percent of the viewership which is by far the highest for any sporting event in the country. The Vivo Indian Premier League usually sees 40 percent viewership coming from women, while Pro Kabaddi sees women contribute to 30 percent of the total viewership. The tournament saw high engagement with an average time spent per viewers of 39 minutes. (Source: BARC, All India, CS2+, live matches). 

Rajesh Kaul, president, distribution, and sports business, Sony Pictures Network India said,

“This is a significant moment for football fans in the country, as we see a tournament with no Indian representation break viewership records. It is truly exciting to be a part of the transformation that this beautiful game is going through in India. Our efforts into ensuring expansive reach through the regional language feeds have yielded excellent results. We are going to keep the momentum going as the tournament picks up the pace.” 

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