BLOG | by Joseph Eapen

COVID-19 – Indians want completion of paused sports competitions and recognise wider value of sport to society

As part of our efforts to quantify the effect of COVID-19 worldwide, we’ve asked Indians how they think sport should respond.

Where a sports event has been paused or suspended, the most popular option for how to proceed is for organisers to complete it at a later date, no matter when that might be (43% of Indians told us this). The second most popular option is to wait and, if after a month it hasn’t been possible to resume play, then to abandon the competition with no winners or losers (29%). See the chart below.

We also asked, in the event that abandonment of tournaments becomes a necessity, how competitions should be completed.

The most popular option was for winners and losers to be decided according to the likelihood of who would win remaining games or matches (48%), although more than a quarter (26%) believed that, under these circumstances, there should be no winners or losers. The third favourite option among Indians was to recognise whoever was winning a competition when it was paused as the overall winner (18%).

On whether India should postpone all sporting events or try to continue, the majority of Indians agree that they should be cancelled or postponed (57%), while just 14% believe that sport should continue but be played behind closed doors. One in ten (10%) believe that sport should carry on as scheduled with spectators present.

Finally, we asked Indians what they thought the value of sport was during the COVID-19 outbreak. See the chart below.

Only a small proportion (16%) of Indians tell us that sport is not important in the scheme of things. The majority of Indians see some value in sport, even during the crisis, with more than a quarter (28%) believing it to be good for the nation’s spirits and around the same proportion (27%) saying that sport remains good for the nation’s economy.

BLOG | by Joseph Eapen

Senior Vice President, India

Joseph has 20 years’ experience in marketing research and media measurement.  He joined YouGov Sport from Repucom where he was SVP South Asia. Prior to that, he was at Media Research Users Council (MRUC), an industry body in India, where he was CEO and responsible for the Indian Readership Survey 2010 (the largest readership study in the world). He was previously the CEO of aMap, the second largest overnight TV ratings company in the world.



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