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With new broadcasts rights, wrestling promises to be a bright spot in Indian sports

With new broadcasts rights, wrestling promises to be a bright spot in Indian sports

Press Releases

Published: 1 Aug 2019 8:43 AM GMT
Wrestling has grown leaps and bound to be one of the most followed sports on in India. India's sporting success in wrestling, fuelled by the Olympic medals of Sushil Kumar, Yogeshwar Dutt and Sakshi Malik in the recent history has led to the growth of viewership of the sport. The FICCI-EY Report published in March 2019, on the business of Indian media and entertainment (M&E) has recorded that wrestling even overtook cricket in 2018 in terms of total viewership. The report suggested wrestling gets 20% of the total viewership in our country, while cricket is marginally trailing with 19%. Although the equations were last updated in March and not recorded during the peak cricket season of the ICC World Cup, wrestling remains a big success.

Pro Wrestling League, a success story

Pro Wrestling League has seen a burgeoning success in India that has generated an improved viewership rating in the past few years. The third edition of the league in 2018 proved to be a hit among the younger viewers while attracting audiences of all age groups. Top wrestlers from 17 countries participated in the league which garnered around 109 million viewership according to BARC, a majority of which was drawn from North India.

Indian wrestlers set the trend

The year 2018 was majorly succesful for Indian wrestling with Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat making the headlines. Both Bajrang and Vinesh won gold medals in their respective categories at the Commonwealth Games as well as the Asian Games. He later claimed the No. 1 rankings after his display at the 2018 World Wrestling Championships. The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) has also made significant policies, by becoming the first Olympic sports governing body in the country to offer sponsorship to its athletes.
Vinesh Phogat

New broadcast rights to spur the popularity

To further spur the growth of wrestling viewers in India the world wrestling body United World Wrestling (UWW) and India-based full-service sports business company Sporty Solutionz entered into a six-year agreement, to monetize and distribute the UWW media rights in the broadcast and digital mediums for the world governing body for Wrestling, United World Sporty Solutionz will also have the right to use recorded footage, feature previews, highlights and news on its partner’s channels. Sporty Solutionz, among the leading sports rights management companies from the Indian Sub-Continent, has distributed sports content of more than 30 sports disciplines around the world while working with over 100 rights holders and broadcasters. UWW signs multi-year TV rights agreement with Sporty Solutionz The partnership will cover four world championships, world cups, continental championships and other age-group UWW events, the statement added. Looking at the development of wrestling in India, the sports will only see a growth in popularity and will be held as one of the most-watched sports.
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