Gary Lineker’s weekend TV striptease is a social media win for underwear brand Sunspel

Sunspel boxers

Sports broadcaster Gary Lineker lost a bet over the weekend and stripped down to his skivvies on British TV. The moment was an instant hit on Twitter, where his fans when went into a frenzy.

But the host of “Match of The Day” wasn’t the only winner on social media. Underwear brand Sunspel, which makes the £30 ($38) cotton boxer shorts, scored too.

According to Sunspel, the niche brand saw its Instagram following boosted by 1 percent. Its own post about Gary Lineker was its third most-liked ever, while the hashtag #garyspants received 45 percent more engagement than its usual hashtags.

The stunt came after Lineker, an ex-footballer, promised to strip down to his undies on the show if his team, Leicester FC, won the 2016 Premier League. Leicester claimed the title in May after beating odds 5,000-1. He made good on his promise during the Saturday night broadcast on BBC One.

According to data from Brandwatch, the #garyspants hashtag had a total of 8,860 Twitter mentions over the weekend. A tweet from the BBC show saw over 17,000 likes and over 15,000 retweets. While Lineker’s own post — which name checked Sunspel — racked up over 36,000 likes on Instagram.

In response, Sunspel updated its homepage with, you guessed it, white cotton boxers. While size XXL is sold out, the brand declined to reveal if sales had seen a boost.

The brand was started in 1860, but it is best-known for bringing boxer shorts from the U.S. to the U.K. market in 1947. As a small-scale retailer, it manufactures all its garments from its factory in Long Eaton, in the north of England.

But while the the boxers were a hit with many, some Twitter remained unmoved by Lineker’s stunt, suggesting he didn’t live up to the, well, brief.
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