India led the way in terms of viewership during the ICC 2019 Cricket World Cup earlier this year, according to new data and figures released by the ICC on Monday.
When it comes to consumption of matches on various live platforms, India’s semi-final against New Zealand drew 25.3 million viewers on Hotstar, which is now a world record for the highest ever concurrent viewership of a live stream.
When it comes to the most watched match of the World Cup, it is no surprise that India vs Pakistan in the group stages was the one, with 273 million unique viewers watching the linear TV coverage, and 50 million more viewers across digital platforms.
The 2019 World Cup also became the most viewed ICC event ever, with a global cumulative average audience of 1.6 billion for live coverage, (which was a 38% increase from the 2015 edition) and a unique broadcast audience of 706 million viewers.
What will be music to the ears of those at the ICC is that the tournament also recorded an increase in the average watch time per unique viewer, growing by 42%.
Commenting on the numbers, ICC Chief Executive Manu Sawhney said, “These quite astounding numbers demonstrate the power of live cricket to connect and engage more deeply with diverse audiences around the world. The theatre and drama of live cricket is compelling and the added jeopardy of tournament cricket enables our sport to cut through and aggregate audiences like never before even in our increasingly fragmented world."
As far as the final was concerned – the most closely contested Cricket World Cup final till date – a unique audience of 15.4 million watched the match between New Zealand and England, with 8.92 million unique viewers watching at the start of the historic Super Over.
Aarti Dabas, ICC Head of Media Rights, Broadcast and Digital said: “More people are watching, more hours of cricket on different platforms than ever before. The consumption of live matches on digital platforms is evidence of fans watching live sport differently and wanting to be fully immersed in the sport and this is exciting time for cricket.”