Johnny Sexton, a name synonymous with Irish rugby, played his last match on a memorable Saturday. After announcing that he would retire after the Rugby World Cup, his final game came in the form of an emotional bout against New Zealand. We did a deep dive into how fans were feeling, using our Social Listening tool.
A Social Media Sensation:
As Johnny Sexton bid farewell, Our Social Listening tool revealed how fans took to social media to express their admiration and respect. These insights, gathered using our Onclusive Social Listening Tool, reveals the staggering impact of his farewell. Mentions of Johnny Sexton surged as the match date approached, with just under 3,000 direct mentions on the date of his final game, peaking as fans shared their appreciation for the rugby legend. The sentiment around these mentions was overwhelmingly positive, showcasing the deep affection and respect fans and fellow players hold for the Irish rugby legend.
The Power of Hashtags:
Not only did mentions of Johnny Sexton flood social media, but a variety of hashtags also became part of the conversation, exemplifying the extensive impact of his farewell:
#RWC2023: With 123 mentions, this hashtag reflected the ongoing Rugby World Cup in 2023, underlining the global interest in the tournament.
#IrevNZL and #RugbyWorldCup: With 36 mentions each, these hashtags highlighted the conversation surrounding the Ireland vs. New Zealand match and the broader Rugby World Cup.
#AllBlacks: Mentioned 18 times, this hashtag celebrated the formidable New Zealand rugby team and their performance in the match.
#TeamOfUs: With 9 mentions, this hashtag captured the unity and support for the Irish national team, demonstrating Johnny Sexton’s impact on a broader scale.
#GoJohnny: This hashtag with 7 mentions was an expression of encouragement and a tribute to Johnny Sexton, emphasizing the fervent support he enjoyed.
These hashtags underscore the extensive reach of Johnny Sexton’s final match, connecting rugby fans, sports enthusiasts, and individuals engaged in various social causes. The diversity of discussions and hashtags reflects the immense respect and admiration for this Irish rugby legend across a wide spectrum of interests.
Johnny Sexton’s final match may not have concluded with the desired victory, but it marked the end of an era in Irish rugby. His illustrious career, leadership, and dedication to the sport have left an indelible mark on the hearts of fans and the annals of rugby history, as evident through analysis of conversation on social media.
The sentiments expressed on social media surrounding his farewell were overwhelmingly positive, serving as a testament to the respect and admiration he garners. Fans and fellow players alike celebrated his contributions to the sport. The only shadow of negativity in the mentions pertained to the result of his final match, a testament to the high standards he had set over his remarkable career.