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Viewing hours of WSL increase by around 400%

Figures released by the Women’s Sport Trust have shown that viewing hours or the WSL have increased by nearly 400%.

The 2021-22 season saw fans tuning in for 34.048m viewing hours, up from 8.83 million hours for 2020-21.

This has contributed to a 140% rise in viewership of women's sport in the first part of 2022.

Games have been shown free-to-air on the BBC network TV in a three-year deal that started last season.

WSL games are being shown live across the BBC and Sky in the deal worth £7m-£8m per season. The BBC will broadcast 22 live matches, with a minimum of 18 shown on BBC One or BBC Two.

WST found this resulted in a 113% increase in coverage hours and 46% of viewers watching the league on more than one occasion.

"These broadcast figures demonstrate once again the growing demand for women's sport," WST chief executive Tammy Parlour said.

The WST co-founder added: "What is encouraging to see is the number of fans coming back on a regular basis to watch women's sport on broadcast, with 46% watching the Barclays WSL on more than one occasion in the 2021-22 season.

"A fifth of viewers watching women's sport on five or more occasions so far this year in comparison to 9% in the same period in 2021."

Almost a third of the UK population has watched women's sport in 2022, with 21.1 million viewers from 1 January to 15 May, up from 8.8 million at the equivalent stage last year.

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