Thursday, December 22, 2011

Irish people loving their sport

Katie Taylor pic courtesy Lucozade

So life just got a little complicated for advocates of women's sport in Ireland. A new survey found that a lot more men than women love sport. Oops.

They found that almost one-third of people living here "love and follow sport on daily basis". All good until I got to the next bit - "substantially higher for men at 47.9 per cent versus only 11.9 per cent for women". Not quite what I was expecting.

No women found a place in the Iconic moments but that's not such a surprise really - not quite there yet. 

And another reminder that team sports are The Thing here, as managing director of the company put it: "Our research clearly underlines the enormous popularity of rugby, Gaelic Games and soccer as they dominate the hearts and minds of the Irish public amongst both males and females and across all age groups."

But there was lots of good news too - in the hunt for the 'greatest current sports star', boxer Katie Taylor came in third just after rugby star Brian O Driscoll and golfing genius Rory McIlroy. That's really great when you think of the high profile both those men have. Taylor headed up the list of female sports stars, keeping good company with jockey Nina Carbery, swimmer Grainne Murphy, hurdler Derval O' Rourke and high jumper Dee Ryan. 

And looking to 2012, the Olympics were in the top three events to get excited about. Good news for women's sports 'cause they'll get so much more coverage in the next few months. It's already happening, you've probably noticed it as well in your area? 

This research was conducted by research agency AskChili, on behalf of Pembroke Communications sports and sponsorship division, amongst a nationally representative sample of 502 respondents with quotas imposed on gender, age, region and social class. Fieldwork was conducted online between the 12th and 15th December 2011. 


Emmet Ryan said...

Top names from team sports are largely the big market pusher in almost every market on a domestic level.

Invidual sports stars are more dependent on global appeal than team sport stars for profile growth.

Michael Johnson is a classic example. In the mid 1990s he was one of the biggest names globally in all of sport but his success as a brand was heavily weighted on international recognition as he still trailed far behind stars from team sports in the US and indeed his own local (Texas) market.

niamh said...

@Emmet - yup, totally agree. There is something about team sports that just gets people out there. And to be fair it's sometimes hard to warm to individual players as they have to be so focused to do it alone. To be fair both McIlroy + Taylor are indiv so 2 out 3 ain't bad - cliche alert!