The 2023 Cricket World Cup continues to break records in terms of viewership and reach with the world governing body announcing that more than 1 million fans having already attended matches across 10 venues in the country.
In a statement, the International Cricket Council said that "the event is on track to become one of the most attended ICC events in history. With six games to go, the millionth fan came through the turnstiles during the match between Afghanistan and South Africa at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad."
There were concerns that the popularity of the ODI format had waned, especially after the opening few games of the 2023 World Cup saw underwhelming attendance figures.
However, as the tournament has worn on, organisational issues surrounding ticket availability have been gradually addressed. As fans' interest in the tournament increased, so did the attendance figures, aided by improved facilities at many of the venues.
Almost all venues have witnessed encouraging crowd numbers even for non India matches and even on week days – the litmus test for the tournament.
Speaking on the milestone, ICC head of events Chris Tetley said: “With over 1 million attendees and record-breaking viewership, the Cricket World Cup 2023 has reminded cricket fans around the world of the support and interest in the ODI format that highlights how much World Cup cricket is valued.
“As we look ahead to the knockout stages, we look forward to this event breaking more records and showcasing the best about cricket in one day.”
The World Cup had earlier broken several viewership records. Live broadcast for the first 18 tournament matches clocked up 123.8 billion viewing minutes – a massive 43 per cent growth compared to the previous edition in England and Wales in 2019.
Also, the World Cup witnessed an incredible 364.2 million viewers tuning in to the live broadcast of the first 18 matches of the tournament.