India’s Sports Industry in 2023: Everything You Need to Know
Sports will always remain something enjoyed by billions of people around the globe. The events where talented, hard-working people compete in various different activities. Of course, India being one of the biggest countries in the world is bound to have a significantly large sports industry.
Having several national leagues, and a decent international scene, the industry is only growing, and is estimated to reach incredible heights by 2030. As of now, we know of the significant growth in numbers, experienced in the year 2022, and know of the fact that the industry is multi-billion dollar one.
As with many other sports, a lot of the appeal for Hockey comes from its unpredictable match outcomes. Leagues like NHL for example, have tons of betting enthusiasts placing NHL odds on the teams they think have the best rosters. For instance, in the upcoming ICC World Test championship, India is competing against Australia at +134. While betting on the outcome of the tournament is a risky process, the rewards certainly speak for themselves.
While NHL is easily the biggest national Hockey league in the world, it is far from being the only one. National Hockey India is a league currently, unfortunately on pause, and is rumored to be revived in the year 2024.
Founded in 2013, while the league was active, it only had six teams competing for the National title. The tournaments are very competitive though, as in five different years there were five different champions. In order, those would be Ranchi Warriors, Delhi Waveriders, Ranchi Rays, Punjab Warriors, and Kalinga Lancers.
During these years, the league suffered some significant setbacks, like the disbanding of teams due to ownership issues, and having to replace these established teams with new ones. Despite this, many people are still looking forward to the revival of National Hockey India, and hoping to see it be greater than ever.
As for the international scene, things are looking better. Historically, the international team is one of the most successful of all time, having an impressive total of eight Olympic gold medals. Of course, most of these come from the early era of the competitions, where from 1928 to 1956 the team won six straight gold medals, but that is not to say that the current team is weak.
In fact, the Indian National team of the year 2023 is ranked number 4 in the world, naturally making them a serious contender in any major tournament. This coupled with the potential revival of the national league in the near future, makes it evident that the Hockey scene is in a good place.
Admittedly, the football scene in India is definitely not at the most desirable spot, but it has been consistently and gradually getting better. The population of 1.4 billion, coupled with the fact that football is the biggest sport in the globe, is self-explanatory as to why the sport is popular in the country.
The interest and the potential is definitely there, however Indian football still has not yet had major successes in the international scene, and that is despite having talented players such as Sunil Chhetri and Gurpreet Sandho.
Nationally however, things are looking good. In 2013, alongside the Hockey league, the Indian Super League was also founded, providing the fans with high-level tournaments and a competitive scene for football. With 12 competing teams, the road to a title is challenging, and representing the league, as current reigning champions are the ATK Mohun Bagan, a club that recently secured its first title.
The ISL as a whole is predicted to grow drastically, and many fans hope that the interest in the sport will propel them into previously unreached heights.
How can anyone talk about the Indian sports industry without mentioning the by far most popular sport in the country, cricket. It generates absurd amount viewership and attention from fans, as some statistics have come out, demonstrating that the sport draws 93% of all sports viewers nationally.
Many have said that the secret to the popularity of this sport in India is rooted within the country’s culture and history. This coupled with the relative simplicity of the game, as well as its similarities with other sports such as Baseball, are heavily contributing factors.
Having a plethora of coaching and training centers for crickets, India has always provided incredible opportunities for those interested in the sport, and continues to do so in higher volume than ever before. Each city possessing at the very least one stadium, up to the highest standards of quality, hosting around hundreds of thousands of games over 19 000 national and international tournaments, are some of the most impressive achievements of the industry.
All of this foretells quite a successful international resume for the Indian team, with some of the greatest achievements being the Cricket world cup, as well as first place in five major ICC tournaments. Currently ranked in the top three worldwide, the Indian Cricket team is a powerhouse, and will likely be a threat in many more tournaments yet to come.
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