Over 8 million Brits witnessed England’s win during the Cricket World Cup on July 14, thanks to Sky, which allowed the game to air on free channel.
Sky’s decision came after criticisms were hurled about England’s previous games having less than a million viewership on Sky channels that are subscription-based. The broadcaster then decided to allow the England’s final match versus New Zealand final to air on Channel 4.
Alex Mahon, Channel 4 chief executive, said he was thrilled to see 8.3 million people in Britain unite to watch England take over New Zealand during the Cricket World Cup final. England and Wales hosted the game.
More than half the total number of viewers witnessed the dramatic match through Channel 4, which resulted in the England team beating the New Zealanders on boundary count after the game and Super Over led to ties.
However, despite the game being aired on the free channel and making a record of being the most-watched cricket competition ever, the game coverage still failed to surpass the viewership of the final game of Wimbledon tennis Men’ Singles.
BBC covered the said game between Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer which took place at the same time with the 2019 Cricket World Cup. 9.6 million people in Britain viewed it.
They are considering the lack of free-to-air coverage of England’s progress in the competition as the reason for the failure of the Cricket World Cup broadcast to surpass the viewership of the Wimbledon finals.
To date, the defeat of England’s woman football team to the USA is the most-watched British television broadcast of the year. BBC broadcasted the game for free.
About 8.5 million viewers tuned in to the broadcast of the 2005 Asher Series, the long-standing cricket competition between England and Australia. However, the number of viewers significantly lessened when the broadcast of the games shifted to subscription channels.
England Prime Minister Theresa May through her spokesperson said she believes that the World Cup game will forever be in the history of British sports. The sport’s heads hope that this will encourage the younger people to play cricket.