Boxing Viewed 51.3% More in 2014 Than 2013 on SkySports Non-PPV

Matchroom Boxing will look back on 2014 with glee – a year in which the promise of the 2 previous years bore ripe fruit for the Brentwood based promotional company. Boxing remains a niche sport within the United Kingdom – years removed from the days when 27,300,000 people tuned in to watch Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier I or 18,000,000 people did so for Barry McGuigan v Eusebio Pedroza or, as recently as 1995, 13,100,000 did likewise for the ill-fated Benn v McClellan.

The research below is based on the only trusted objective metric available – the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board or BARB‘s count – & shows that 2014 saw a total of 1,197,000 views (not viewers) of SkySports‘ non-Pay Per View boxing programming. The counts are limited to weeks in which such programming placed within the Top 10 of programming on a given SkySports channel. The total is up fully 51.3% on 2013’s number yet also throws up intriguing questions about the validity of claimed Pay Per View card numbers – specifically the alleged 900,000 for Froch-Groves 2 & 200,000 for Bellew-Cleverly 2. Both claims appear suspect given that no single non-PPV broadcast reached more than 176,000 viewers over the course of fully two years.

The gains made by Matchroom/SkySports – becoming the de facto only viable option for professional boxers with ambition in the UK – are pleasing yet sobering simultaneously when you look at the larger historical downward spiral of the sports’ wider cultural significance. A step in the right direction, though, surely..

Date/Broadcast/Viewership/Channel

2013

w/e 10 Feb 2013 RINGSIDE/#RINGSIDE EP 21 (SAT 1517) 61,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 10 Mar 2013 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE/#DARREN BARKER V SIMO (SAT 2000) 63,000 Sky Sports 2

Darren Barker vs. Simone Rotolo/

George Groves vs. Dario German Balmaceda

w/e 12 May 2013 RICKY BURNS: MY GREATEST NIGHT/#RINGSIDE (SAT 1515) 122,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 30 Jun 2013 RINGSIDE (THU 1759) 40,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 8 Sep 2013 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE (SAT 2000) 136,000 Sky Sports 2

Ricky Burns VS. Raymundo Beltran

w/e 22 Sep 2013 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE (SAT 2100) 75,000 Sky Sports 2

Derry Mathews vs. Curtis Woodhouse

w/e 6 Oct 2013 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE/#ANTHONY JOSHUA V EMA (SAT 2032) 146,000 Sky Sports 2

Scott Quigg vs. Yoandris Salinas

w/e 3 Nov 2013 RINGSIDE (THU 1759) 84,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 3 Nov 2013 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE (SAT 2000) 127,000 Sky Sports 2

Richard Towers vs. Lucas Browne

w/e 1 Dec 2013 FROCH V GROVES:THE FIGHT (SAT 1655) 73,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 1 Dec 2013  FROCH V GROVES: THE FIGHT (FRI 2001) 80,000 Sky Sports 2

2014

w/e 23 Feb 2014 FIGHT NIGHT LIVE (SAT 2010) 88,000 Sky Sports 2

Darren Hamilton vs. Curtis Woodhouse

w/e 23 Feb 2014 FIGHT NIGHT (SUN 1702) [Repeat] 40,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 2 Mar 2014 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE (SAT 1900) 153,000 Sky Sports 2

Ricky Burns vs. Terence Crawford

w/e 16 Mar 2014 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE (SAT 1900) 115,000 Sky Sports 2

Kell Brook vs. Alvaro Robles

w/e 20 Apr 2014 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE (SAT 1930) 96,000 Sky Sports 2

Anthony Crolla vs. John Murray

w/e 4 May 2014 RINGSIDE (SAT 0900) 29,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 4 May 2014 RINGSIDE-FROCH/GROVES/#RINGSIDE 35 (THU 2230) 57,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 25 May 2014 FROCH V GROVES I (SUN 1830) [Re-broadcast] 54,000 Sky Sports 2

w/e 25 May 2014 FIGHT NIGHT-LIVE (WED 1930) 57,000 Sky Sports 2

Josh Warrington vs. Martin Lindsay

w/e 21 Sep 2014 LIVE FIGHT NIGHT (SAT 2000) 176,000 Sky Sports 2

Christopher Rebrasse vs. George Groves

w/e 28 Sep 2014 LIVE FIGHT NIGHT INTERNATIONAL (SAT 2030) 108,000 Sky Sports 2

Arthur Abraham vs. Paul Smith

w/e 5 Oct 2014 LIVE FIGHT NIGHT (SAT 2031) 89,000 Sky Sports 2

Josh Warrington vs. Davide Dieli

w/e 26 Oct 2014 FIGHT NIGHT – LIVE (SAT 1930) 71,000 Sky Sports 2

Tommy Coyle vs. Michael Katsidis

w/e 16 Nov 2014 LIVE FIGHT NIGHT (SAT 1930) 64,000 Sky Sports 2

Jorge Sebastian Heiland vs. Matthew Macklin

2013 Total Views (not viewers): 791,000 over 11 broadcasts. Average broadcast had 71,909 viewers.

2014 Total Views (not viewers): 1,197,000 (Up 51.3% on 2013) over 14 broadcasts. Average broadcast had 85,500 viewers (Up 18.9%).