Most Watched Sports Across The World

Sports are among the world’s most popular pastimes and hobbies. There are many who live and breathe their lives based on the games and activities that they enjoy.

Some will incorporate them into their daily lives, combining sporting events with things that they love to do. For instance, sports betting has grown because of the passion that people have, with many often seeking out sites that offer bonus codes like the BonusFinder New Zealand platform does for casino enthusiasts.

Indeed, many of those that are among the most popular are easy to identify. Many of the biggest sports can often be found among the top options that provide various betting opportunities as there are usually a ton of markets to place a bet on.

The undisputed top two: Football and Cricket
Some sports can often attract their fair share of an audience in terms of the numbers that they can appeal to, whereas there are others which are able to generate obscenely huge numbers due to their global popularity. These are sports that are synonymous with being among the most watched.

Football - which is also known as soccer in some parts of the world - remains the global #1 option for most, attracting audiences in the billions. Some estimates have the sport being viewed by more than 3.5 billion people worldwide, with almost every continent in the world enjoying it.

It’s a game that has continued to increase in viewing with fans in certain parts of the world, too, as the game has grown. We’ve seen countries like the USA, Saudi Arabia, and China all look to improve their game and attract more viewers, thus helping the sport to gain even more viewers in countries where it perhaps wasn’t as popular.

It is widely considered cricket to be the #2 most-watched sport, but this will have been helped because of the regions in which it is popular. India has the second-highest number in terms of population, and with more than a billion people here, it’s no surprise that the viewing figures are high, given that it’s their national sport. With the rest of Southern Asia, and places like the UK, Australia, the Caribbean, and South Africa all having a cricketing culture, the sport is estimated to attract more than 2.5 billion viewers.

Populations can have an impact
As we have seen with the popularity of cricket, populations can clearly have an impact on what sports are watched the most.

Basketball is perhaps a prime example, as is baseball and American football. Although not as exclusive as they once were, each of the three sports is predominantly watched by those in North America and not much elsewhere.

Nonetheless, they still rank consistently among the most watched worldwide. Some estimates have suggested that Basketball is around the third-most in terms of viewing figures, with around 2.4 billion claimed to be fans. This is growing as the game’s popularity continues to get better, with Europe and Asia also taking to the sport. However, while the US population is only 333.3 million, they would have to make up most of the numbers.

Baseball is a game that has experienced love in fewer countries, with Japan being the only real one of note outside of the US, while American Football is starting to make strides and expand globally year-on-year. Nonetheless, these aren’t sports that rank too highly among the most watched.

Hockey (whether it be field or ice) has also attracted several audiences throughout its existence, but it is another sport that can often be enjoyed in large populations. Apparently, more than 2.2 billion people enjoy it. Still, with the game being largely played out of Canada, the USA, Scandinavia, and a few parts of Eastern Europe, there’s a lot of the world that probably doesn’t even know how or where to watch it.

Golf is another sport that is very global, but most don’t watch it in the type of numbers that would be expected based on its accessibility and presence.

Surprising sports that can be considered the most-watched
According to findings that were uncovered in 2023, there were a few sports that appeared on the list of being among the most watched for that year. They aren’t your traditional run-of-the-mill games in the same way that football or cricket might be, which can make them a little more surprising.

The data suggested that volleyball, tennis, swimming, badminton, and table tennis were also very popular with sports enthusiasts last year. Tennis is perhaps easier than the others to understand, but it’s also possible to consider what is happening in the summer of 2024.

The Paris 2024 Olympic Games will be taking place, and sports like volleyball, swimming, badminton, and table tennis will all be major disciplines. While there may be genuine popularity in these sports, there may have been an increase in viewing over the last year or so because of the proximity of the Games. With sports betting opportunities on the horizon for those who like to take a punt to enhance their viewing experiences, they may be doing some additional research.

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