Why Joshua vs Povetkin is pubs' biggest sporting revenue opportunity for the rest of 2018
By Kyle Fullerton
September 13, 2018

Almost 18 months on from one of the greatest fights in modern boxing history, it should be no surprise that Anthony Joshua’s next fight is on track to be one of the biggest sporting events of the year again. On Saturday 22nd September, Joshua will defend his 4 belts against Russia’s Alexander Povetkin and MatchPint have crunched the numbers showing you why need to be showing it.


The growth in popularity of British boxing seems to be showing no signs of slowing down, as shown by latest MatchPint data confirming that no other sporting event gets more searches than boxing. The future looks to see even more growth with the likelihood of headline fights to be announced for Tyson Fury, Amir Khan, Kell Brook and Tony Bellew on top of another Anthony Joshua fight in the near future.


Alexander Povetkin provides Joshua his biggest challenge since that famous night in March 2017 against Wladamir Klitschko, which was a record-breaking night for pubs. Over 288,000 searches were made on MatchPint by fans looking for pubs showing the fight, coming mainly from a hard to target demographic; 54% of them made by 18-34-year olds.


Vianet data showed that pubs that did show the fight sold 120% more pints than those that didn’t. It also showed the average pub made a 4:1 return on investment on the cost of buying that fight, just from drinks sales. With a large number of pubs choosing to ticket boxing events between £5-£10 per person, the average incremental value over whole day is likely to far exceed the 4:1 return (which equated to £967 per pub).


Earlier in the day of Joshua vs Povetkin also sees a regular schedule of Premier League football with 2 televised fixtures; Fulham vs Watford and Brighton vs Tottenham Hotspur. The aforementioned £967 incremental value per pub during the day of the Klitschko fight only included one televised Premier League fixture, a 2-0 victory for Burnley at Crystal Palace. With a more traditional Saturday offering of Premier League football this time around, MatchPint would expect to see it deliver an incremental value much closer to the average £406 per Premier League Saturday.


With all of those things taken into consideration, it’s not unrealistic at all that the 22nd September could see pubs making over £1,500 in incremental value from the day’s sport. For those pubs out there balking at the £300 box office price for the fight, this proves that it really is a worthwhile investment.



MatchPint’s Top Tips for Nailing Joshua vs Povetkin


  • Start talking about it NOW. There have already been over 10,000 searches by fans for pubs showing the fight. Let your current punters know early and give them preferential booking options if you are going to ticket the event. Got a video of your pub from a previous fight? Absolutely perfect thing to be sharing in the lead up.


  • The biggest things fans love during these events is the atmosphere. To nail the atmosphere, make sure you have the sound up, multiple unrestricted views of screens and seating arranged to focus on a large projector screen if possible (this really generates a stadium like feel).


  • Show the whole undercard and market that too. There are some great fights earlier in the night and getting fans in as early as possible helps with congestion before the main event and increases sales opportunities.


  • It’s sometimes the little things that really improve fan’s experiences, so think about committing to some décor for the pub, running sweepstakes on who’ll win & in which round or even having some themed drinks/food on the menu.




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