Based on viewing audiences, soccer is the most popular sport in the world. So what is the second most popular? Clues: it isn’t rugby, cricket, swimming or motor racing – and this year it has a lot to do with Queensland’s Gold Coast.
The answer would appear to be badminton. The TV broadcast for badminton’s Sudirman Cup will see the hugely popular event watched by more than 500 million households globally. That, , according to Tourism and Events Queensland, ranks badminton as the world’s second most popular sport – just behind soccer.
Various tourism and political dignitaries gathered a couple of days ago at Southport Broadwater Parklands to announce the 32 countries that will compete for top honours at the globally-celebrated Total BWF Sudirman Cup 2017.
Children in traditional dress – representing some of the biggest badminton nations globally – were also on hand to celebrate the world team championships of badminton coming to Australia for the first time in the Sudirman Cup’s 25 year history.
The TV broadcast for the Sudirman Cup will see the hugely popular event watched by more than 500 million households globally, with badminton ranking as the world’s second most popular sport – just behind soccer.
Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment and Gold Coast MP, Steven Ciobo, said the event would help drive visitors to the Gold Coast.
“Thirteen of the 32 countries playing in the Sudirman Cup are Australia’s top tourism markets. These countries make up 78 per cent of total international visitor spend and 79 per cent of international arrivals to Australia.
“This event will attract more than 1,500 competitors from over 30 countries and a global television audience of more than 500 million, cementing the Gold Coast’s reputation as a premier destination for hosting sporting events.
“This is the first time the Sudirman Cup has been held in Australia. It’s an opportunity to showcase to the world that the Gold Coast has it all – stunning beaches, unique nature and wildlife, a vibrant food and wine scene and, of course, world class events.”
Queensland Minister for Tourism and Major Events Kate Jones said the event would deliver a significant economic boost and international exposure for the Gold Coast.
“We are looking forward to hosting the Sudirman Cup 2017 and the BWF annual general meeting on the Gold Coast in May,” Jones said.
“Together, these two events are expected to inject around AUD 10 million into the local economy – which is good news for Gold Coast businesses and jobs.
“Hosting world-renowned events like this also allow us to showcase Queensland to a global audience, drive international and interstate visitor nights and grow the State’s economy.
“With many of the world’s top badminton countries travelling to the City to compete in this championship event, it will be an excellent prelude to the upcoming Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
“Through Tourism and Events Queensland, our Government is continuing to work hard to attract world-class events which deliver the best tourism outcomes and exceptional value for the people of Queensland.”
Official guests had the opportunity to get an up-close look at the one-of-a-kind Sudirman Cup trophy. The replica shuttlecock gold-platted trophy stands at an impressive 80cms tall and is located on the Gold Coast as the countdown to the week-long event swings into motion.
The Sudirman Cup will be staged from May 21-28 at the Gold Coast Sports & Leisure Centre, the new sporting precinct for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018). It will be the first major event held at the Centre before GC2018.
Edited by Peter Needham