Four in a row- Katie Taylor remains Ireland’s Most Admired Sports Star

Katie Taylor remains Ireland’s Most Admired Sports Star, collecting the gong for the fourth successive year.

No one came close to knocking the Irish boxer off her perch and her popularity was represented on three fronts, the Bray native also finishing out in front in the voting for Greatest Irish Sporting achievement and Most Memorable Irish sporting moment of 2020.

The annual Teneo Sport and Sponsorship Index (TSSI) once again proved the undisputed lightweight world champion’s endearing appeal and the regard she is held with in Ireland.

The RTE Sportsperson of the Year  was a clear winner in the most admired category with 30% of the vote. The two weight world champions nearest rival was rugby player Johnny Sexton at 6%, while she finished a full 25% ahead of golfer Shane Lowry.

It’s the fourth successive year the Ring Magazine fighter finished first.

In fact, it’s the sixth time in eight years that she has topped this particular poll, the only other winners in that time are the now-retired former Ireland rugby captain Paul O’Connell in 2015 and MMA fighter Conor McGregor in 2016.

Taylor’s also finished top of the pile when it came to Ireland’s Most Memorible Sporting Moment and the Greatest Sporting Achievement.

Her win over Delfine Persoon, which played out on Fight Camp, was voted top in both categories.

The enthralling rematch took 32% of the vote in the memoriable moment category, over double the amount Tour De France participant of Sam Bennett.

It also won Bennett’s display in France to Greatest Sporting Achievement.

“Katie Taylor remains undoubtedly our favourite sport star and she is Ireland’s most admired for the fourth year in succession”, said Rob Pearson, a director at Teneo Ireland. “Her ongoing excellence in the ring continues to capture the imagination of the general public and along with Dublin’s women’s footballers strong showing in the Team of the Year category, it proves once again the appetite for women’s sport amongst Irish people.”

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Ireland’s Favourite Sport (top six only)

  • Gaelic Games – 24%
  • Soccer – 14%
  • Rugby – 13%
  • = Cycling / Tennis – 5%
  • = Athletics / Golf – 3%

Team of the Year (top five only)

  • Dublin Senior Football Team – 24%
  • Limerick Senior Hurling Team – 23%
  • Leinster Rugby – 20%
  • Dublin Ladies Football Team – 12%
  • Dundalk FC 10%

Most Admired Athlete (top five only)

  • Katie Taylor – 30%
  • Jonathan Sexton – 6%
  • Shane Lowry – 5%
  • = Joe Canning / Padraig Harrington / Conor Murray / Sam Bennett – 4%

Most Memorable Sporting Moment (top five only)

  • Katie Taylor has her hand raised after beating Delfine Persoon – 32%
  • Sam Bennett wins the Tour de France final stage in Paris – 15%
  • Tipperary win their first Munster SFC title in 85 years – 11%
  • = Limerick beat Waterford to win the All-Ireland / Waterford recover from nine points down to beat Kilkenny in the All-Ireland semi-final– 7%

Greatest Sporting Achievement (top five only)

  • Katie Taylor out-points Delfine Persoon for the second time to retain her unified world lightweight belts – 27%
  • Sam Bennett wins the Tour de France green jersey – 16%
  • Dublin Senior footballers win All-Ireland six in-a-row – 9%
  • Tipperary win Munster Senior Football Championship – 8%
  • Limerick win the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship – 7%

Event Most Looking Forward to in 2020 (top five only)

  • Tokyo Olympic Games – 20 %
  • Six Nations – 17%
  • All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship – 14%
  • All-Ireland Senior Football Championship – 11%
  • Euro 2020 – 10%

Jonny Stapleton contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: