The Match: Champions for Charity was wildly popular for Indiana’s online sportsbooks.
The all-star filled golf event had Tiger Woods and Colts legend Peyton Manning team up to face off against Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady. Woods and Manning ended up winning the event by one hole.
The Match ended up raising $20 million for COVID-19 relief.
With most of the sports world still shut down from the health crisis, bettors around the country turned their attention towards golf. The event generated a huge amount of interest, particularly for sportsbooks like BetRivers.
BetRivers sportsbook sets a golf betting record
According to some newly-released data, The Match was the most bet upon non-major golf event in the history of BetRivers.
That’s a big win for BetRivers since it’s seen significantly less traffic since the start of the health crisis. In April, BetRivers took in a little over $2 million in wagers. Its handle has been dropping steadily since it brought in nearly $8 million in wagers back in February.
Every sportsbook has been struggling recently. There just haven’t a lot of sports to bet on. That problem isn’t unique to BetRivers.
However, The Match did provide a much-needed boost in traffic. Or at least, enough to set a golf betting record for BetRivers.
By the end of the event, 60% of the money wagered was going towards Woods and Manning to win the tournament.
That was a bit of a change-up from how bettors were originally looking at The Match. At first, bettors were feeling good about Mickelson and Brady, with over 70% of the handle backing them to win the event.
The Match was also more popular for betting than the first Woods and Mickelson matchup.
PlaySugarHouse is the New Jersey equivalent of Indiana’s BetRivers. Back in November 2018, when Tiger-Phil round one took place, New Jersey was the only state that the sportsbook was taking bets in.
Bettors wagered 1.5 times the money for The Match 2 than they did for the first Tiger-Phil outing at PlaySugarHouse.
Indiana didn’t have legal sports betting when the first bout took place, so there isn’t really any data to compare. Despite that, New Jersey still serves as a test case for the event’s increased popularity.
It’s safe to say that The Match captivated bettors and audiences around the country.
The Match most-viewed golf event in cable history
Turner Sports showed the live event across its network, and the results were beyond expectations.
Across TNT, TBS, truTV, and HLN, the match averaged 5.8 million viewers. That officially makes it the most-viewed golf event in the history of cable television.
That’s a huge number, considering that The Match was played for charity, rather than the early rounds of a major championship like the US Open.
The people involved were certainly a draw for viewers. Woods, Mickelson, Manning, and Brady are household names.
However, the popularity of the match was the result of more than just the golfers. It shows that sports fans around the country are still starved for content during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As we head into the summer, fans are still anxious about the big hitters returning to action. The MLB, NHL, and NBA are all looking to get things rolling again.
Until those major sports leagues return, any new sports content like The Match will have a good chance to continue to draw in spectacular numbers.