Interest in AFLW soars to new heights

AFLW trumps all female sporting competitions in Australia when it comes to attracting passionate fans, figures show.

Research conducted by global measurement and data analytics company Nielsen found that interest in AFLW had soared to unprecedented levels following a "slight dip" last year.

The poll revealed that 69 per cent of general AFL fans were interested in the women’s competition – a positive development after there was a reduction from 67 per cent in 2017 to 65 per cent last year.

"Among women's sport fans, AFLW has the highest avidity of all domestic female leagues," the Nielsen report found.

Ahead of the AFLW Grand Final between Adelaide and Carlton in Adelaide on Sunday, Nielsen revealed that 64 per cent of Australians are aware of AFLW, including 74 per cent of women's sports fans, among whom 36 per cent identified as "avid" fans.

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Nielsen linked the increased awareness and popularity of AFLW to the growth of the competition this season from eight to 10 teams and attention-grabbing issues such as the recent Tayla Harris photo controversy.

Not surprisingly, the most familiar and popular AFLW players among fans were Crows champion Erin Phillips and Melbourne star Daisy Pearce (who missed this season to give birth to twins).

At the moment, 42 per cent of AFL fans interested in AFLW don't follow one of the 10 clubs, but this is expected to improve given that the 2020 season will herald the introduction of four new teams, including the heavily supported West Coast and Richmond.

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