Super League attendances up in 2023 despite cost-of-living crisis

The opening two rounds of Super League have seen some brilliant attendances with over 100,000 fans having attended a match day so far.

Across 11 total games the total combined attendance has been 108,813 which means each match has seen an average crowd of 9,892 fans, a seriously impressive number.

But how does that number stack up to the 2022 season, or even the 2019 season which was the last season prior the the pandemic?

We crunched the numbers and analysed the total attendances of the opening two rounds in each year, the average attendance and also the highest attendances.

The Current Season: 2023

Round One saw only five fixtures due to the St Helens’ participation in the World Club Challenge fixture against Penrith Panthers.

That fixture itself recorded an attendance of 13,873, which was actually quite a disappointing figure for the fixture based on it’s history.

As a result round one saw the five Super League fixtures total 49,159 which was an average of 9,832 per game. Hull FC’s home fixture against Castleford Tigers topped the charts with a huge 15,383 fans turning up at the MKM Stadium.

As for round two there were six fixtures once again and they totalled an impressive 59,384 fans equating to an average attendance of 9,897, an increase of 65 fans per fixture.

It was another Hull FC fixture that saw the highest attendance, however this time the Black and Whites were on the road against Leeds Rhinos, with 16,140 turning up at Headingley for the Smith derby.

The combined total and average was therefore 108,813 and 9,892 respectively.

Last Season: 2022

The 2022 season opening round saw a larger total of 57,793 fans however that figure came across six games, not five, therefore the average attendance at each of the six matches was 9,632.

Of those the highest attended game was the Leeds-Warrington fixture at Headingley with 14,135 turning up, over 1,200 below round one’s peak attendance this year.

The second round of fixtures in 2022 saw a decreased figure of just 51,066 on which is still an impressive average of 8,511.

Of those games it was once again Hull FC who recorded the highest attendance, 12,673 as St Helens visited, whilst Wigan and Leeds saw 12,575 turn up to the DW.

In total 108,859 fans attended the opening two rounds in 2022 which meant an average of just over 9,071 people attend.

Pre-pandemic season: 2019

Round One of the 2019 season got off to a bang with St Helens hosting Wigan and a round-high of 16,508 turned up at the Totally Wicked Stadium for that game.

That figure helped prop up some other attendances and the average across the six fixtures was 9,456 as 56,736 fans attended Super League fixtures in early 2019.

As for round two the highest attendance was once again Hull FC with 11,244 attending their home fixture against Castleford. What’s so impressive is that the same fixture this year saw 15,383 fans turn up, an increase of over 4,000 fans.

The round two average was 8,486 with 50,916 fans attending the games in total, meaning the opening two rounds fixtures saw 107,652 fans in attendance at an average of 8,971.


Maybe the fixtures have fallen lucky but it’s clear that this current season is by far the most attended in terms of the opening two rounds, across this sample size.

There’s a pre-pandemic increase of 921 fans per fixture and a yearly increase in attendance of 821.

Pair that with five of the 11 fixtures seeing 10,000 or more fans in attendance, including two totals of over 15,000 it seems that Super League is in a brilliant state by way of fans through the turnstiles.

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