The much-anticipated T20 World Cup 2021 match between archrivals Pakistan and India on 24 October was the most-watched T20I encounter to date with 167 million views, the official broadcaster said in a statement on Monday.
“With a reach of 167 million, the highly-anticipated Pakistan-India clash on 24 October, an event that saw the archrivals meet at an ICC tournament after two years, is now the most viewed T20I match,” Star India said in a press release.
The high-voltage game surpassed the previously most-watched game between India and the West Indies that had accumulated 136 million viewers.
The qualifiers and the first 12 games of the Super 12 stage of the T20 World Cup registered a cumulative reach of 238 million, the broadcaster stated.
“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.”
Both India and Pakistan had opened their World Cup campaigns with the 24 October encounter in Dubai in which Pakistan claimed a comprehensive 10-wicket win.
Pakistan then went on to win the next four games to become the only team to qualify for the semifinals with an unbeaten record in group stages. India, badly hampered by a humbling defeat, crashed out of the tournament after the first round.
“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,” the Indian channel’s release added.