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Study: Women’s sport UK viewership breaks record for first four months of 2023

20.6m watched three minutes or more of women’s sport coverage from 1st January to 30th April.

18 May 2023 Josh Sim

Getty Images

The first four months of 2023 brought record TV viewership for women’s sport in the UK, according to research by the Women’s Sport Trust (WST).


  • 20.6 million people watched three minutes or more of women’s sport coverage from 1st January to 30th April 2023, in comparison to 18.9 million in 2022.
  • The Women’s Six Nations was the most viewed on record with 10.4 million viewing hours, compared to the previous best of 7.7 million last year
  • 42 per cent of fans for the Women’s Six Nations were female, compared to 37 per cent in 2022
  • For all matches up to 30th April, 15.3 million UK viewers have watched at least three minutes of the Women’s Super League (WSL) live on TV, beating the 14.6 million that watched throughout the whole of the 2021/22 season
  • Average match audiences for the WSL are up 36 per cent season-on-season.
  • Soccer’s Arnold Clark Cup reached 1.5 million more people this year, with 4.6 million people watching three minutes or more
  • The 2023 International Cricket Council (ICC) T20 World Cup racked up a record-breaking 7.11 million live TV viewing hours, eclipsing the previous best of 5.77 million for the 2018 edition
  • England’s matches for the tournament averaged 150,000 viewers per game, up 12,000 from the 2020 edition


The WST had found that 40.1 million unique viewers watched at least three minutes of women’s sport on TV in 2022, with this year on course to see a sizeable increase if viewership continues to go up in the UK.


“The unstoppable rise of women’s sport is again illustrated by these record-breaking figures,” said Tammy Parlour, WST chief executive.

“It is hugely encouraging to see that a number of sports, including football, rugby union and cricket, are attracting record audiences in the first four months of 2023.”

Coming next:

England cricket and soccer fans will have the opportunity to continue watching their teams in action this summer with the Women’s Ashes and Fifa Women’s World Cup taking place.

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