Katie Taylor is Ireland’s most admired athlete for seventh year running

Ireland’s men’s rugby team are the most admired team in the country

Katie Taylor has been named Ireland’s most admired athlete for the seventh year running, according to the 2023 Teneo Sport and Sponsorship Index (TSSI).

Having tasted defeat for the first time in her professional career earlier this year, Katie Taylor won her November rematch against Chantelle Cameron to become a two-weight undisputed world champion.

Sharing second spot on 9 per cent are World Rugby Player of the Year nominee, Bundee Aki, and recently retired former Ireland captain, Jonathan Sexton.

Jockey Rachael Blackmore is fourth with 6 per cent of the vote, ahead of Ireland rugby international Peter O’Mahony. Katie McCabe is the third most admired woman athlete, taking 4 per cent of the vote and a share of sixth place overall alongside golfer Rory McIlroy, Kerry footballer David Clifford and Conor McGregor, whose popularity is at a five-year high.


In a Rugby World Cup year, and having won the Six Nations, Andy Farrell’s Ireland men’s rugby team are the most popular team with 29 per cent of the vote. The Republic of Ireland women’s football team came second with 24 per cent of the vote.

For greatest sporting achievement, there was 25 per cent of the vote each going to Katie Taylor’s victory over Chantelle Cameron at the 3Arena and the Ireland men’s rugby team’s Grand Slam win over England on St Patrick’s weekend.

Gaelic games remains Ireland’s favourite sport on 21 per cent with soccer on 20 per cent and rugby on 14 per cent. Tennis is once again the nation’s fourth favourite sport but this year it is joined by athletics (both 4 per cent).

The Paris Olympics next summer is the most anticipated sporting event of the year at 21 per cent, followed by the Six Nations on 17 per cent.

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David Gorman

David Gorman

David Gorman is a sports journalist with The Irish Times