The ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021, one of the most awaited tournaments of the year, has delivered exceptional viewership on Star India network, the official broadcaster of the event, registering a cumulative reach of 238* million till last week (qualifiers + first 12 games of Super 12 stage).
From edge-of-the-seat thrillers, exciting clashes to surprise packages, the opening stage, dominated by the high-octane India-Pakistan encounter, had its fair share of twists and turns, keeping viewers and fans hooked onto the action. The overall consumption reached an astounding 47 billion minutes (qualifiers + first 12 games of Super 12 stage).
With a reach of 167 million*, the highly-anticipated India-Pakistan clash on October 24, an event that saw the arch-rivals meet at an ICC tournament after two years, is now the most viewed T20I match, exceeding the previous high–India-West Indies 2016 ICC World T20 semi-finals.
Commenting on the development, a Star India spokesperson said: “The India-Pakistan match has created history by clocking a record reach of 167 million viewers, making it the most viewed T20I match till date. We have continually strived to grow the audience base for marquee Cricket and this record is a testament to our efforts across high-decibel campaigns, enhanced storytelling, dedicated regional programming, and consumer innovations.”
“There’s no doubt that the result of the match and India’s exit from the tournament disappointed fans but the record viewership displays the unique power of Cricket to engage audiences at an unprecedented scale,” he added.
The match surpassed the previous peak, which was the 2016 ICC World T20 semi-finals between India and West Indies, which had a reach of 136 million and an AMA (average minute audiences in ‘000) of 60.
The ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 began with the ‘Live the Game’ campaign anthem, created by Star Sports in association with ICC. Highlighting cricket as a sport that transcends boundaries, with fans across the globe, the campaign captured the attention and infused joy, and togetherness with the fiercest competition.
Captivating and building on the hype of the marquee tournament, the broadcaster announced a complete revamp of design and technology and the debut of industry-first broadcast innovations ahead of the Super 12 stage.
Significantly, India had lost the high octane clash against the Babar Azam-led Pakistan side by 10 wickets.
It was for the first time in the history of ICC World Cups when Pakistan had registered a win against arch-rivals India.
Asked to bat first, India rode skipper Virat Kohli’s 57 followed by stumper Rishabh Pant’s valuable 39 to put a respectable 151/7 in the allotted 20 overs before Pakistan overhauled the target with ease.
Chasing a moderate 152-run target, Babar’s unbeaten 68 along with Mohammad Rizwan’s unbeaten 79 helped Pakistan cross the line in 17.5 overs as the Indian bowlers struggled for wickets.