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Which Sports Do Americans Follow?

This article is published in collaboration with Statista

by Felix Richter

With Serena Williams bidding farewell and the men’s draw wide open in the absence of two thirds of the “Big Three”, this year’s US Open is packed with interesting storylines. Millions of tennis fans in the United States and around the world will be following the action at the last Grand Slam event of the year over the next two weeks, as one of the biggest stars in the history of the game is getting ready for her last dance. Will Serena’s exceptional career find the ending it deserves? And how close is injury-plagued Rafael Nadal to the finish line?

While tennis has been grabbing a lot of headlines in the run-up to the US Open, it no longer captures the imagination of U.S. sports fans the way it did in its heyday, when players like John McEnroe, Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras were among the biggest athletes in the world. With Serena Williams, the last American superstar is about to bow out, leaving a void that will be hard to fill for the next generation of players. On the men’s side of the game, no American has won a Grand Slam since Andy Roddick triumphed in New York in 2003, leaving American tennis fans no choice but to cheer on Roger Federer for the better part of the past two decades.

According to findings from Statista’s Global Consumer Survey, Tennis is no longer among Americans’ favorite sports to follow. While 15.5 percent of the roughly 8,000 surveyed sports fans said they followed professional tennis, that only ranks the sport 9th behind the usual suspects (i.e. “American sports”) plus soccer, boxing, golf and mixed martial arts.

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