BLOG | by Liam Randell

Who is Australia’s Favourite Current Female Athlete in 2021?

Take a moment before you read the results, off the top of your head consider who is your favourite current Australian female athlete? And who do you think Australian’s would vote? Now that you have decided on those names let’s deep dive and see the results.

The study was simple, we went and asked 3,000 Australians on the YouGov panel who their favourite current Australian female athlete is. Impressively one name stood out well beyond the others with another three in close contention for 2nd spot. One of my personal favourites Lucy Bartholomew unfortunately featured lower but I would encourage you to check out her feats, they are quite astonishing!

And the winner is …!

There would be few Australians who would not know the name ‘Ash Barty’, the current world number 1 in Tennis.  The 2019 French Open Champion is not only a key drawcard at the Australian Open but for global tennis events. No doubt close attention will be on her as she approaches the 2021 French Open and Wimbledon in the coming weeks.

Our second-place finisher includes our soccer superstar Samantha Kerr who will play a vital role in the women’s World Cup coming to Australia in 2023 and should only see her popularity grow in coming years. In 3rd and 4th we have the dynamic duo from our Australian Cricket team Ellyse Perry and Alyssa Healy who currently lead an incredible women’s side who have won everything. Rounding out our top 5 is Stephanie Gilmore who has a casual 7 world championship surfing titles to her name.

Click on chart to view larger size

How do men and women differ in their voting?

While women (n=1,535) had an additional 69 votes compared to men (n=1,466) we can still see how preferences differ between the two groups.

For our favourite athlete Ashleigh Barty there was considerably higher support amongst the female demographic while for Samantha Kerr, Ellyse Perry and Alyssa Healy popularity was more dominated amongst the male cohort.

Overall men were shown to be significantly more likely to have a favourite female athlete compared to women.

View larger chart in the full study

What sports have our favourite female athletes?

The 6 key sports that bring most of Australia’s favourite female athletes include, Tennis, Cricket, AFLW, Soccer, Swimming and Surfing.

While Tennis and Soccer have one key figure in Ashleigh Barty and Samantha Kerr driving much of the voting, other sports such as AFLW and Swimming sees a range of athletes making up the total number of votes.

View larger chart in the full study

While this is just one small study YouGov Sport Australia completed our detailed Profiles platform currently tracks Australia’s favourite athletes across 17 of the biggest codes in Australia and globally. This enables our clients, marketing teams, brands and sponsors to track and see movements in what athletes are top of mind and most liked amongst Australians, sports fans or specific league or team fans.

For more information on this article or what YouGov Sport can do for you please feel free to contact our Managing Director Ned Morris at

BLOG | by Liam Randell

Research Analyst

Liam currently leads client facing and research services for the AFL and all 18 clubs, Tennis Australia, the NBL amongst a host of other key clients. He’s also an avid Triathlete with a love for all things sport.


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