I did something last week I’ve never done before – I went to watch a live soccer match. That was no small thing, and a vox pop of friends’ and families’ reactions proved this! Australia is generally a fairly sports-mad country, and while a lot of people are happy to watch any sport at all, I’m not like that. I do love, and will watch, motorsport (Bathurst, etc.) and I love cricket; anything else I can take or leave.
I have only ever been to two live sporting events before this week – an AFL (Australian Rules) match and a one-day cricket match. The AFL was OK but I didn’t really understand the rules at the time; the cricket match was awful – got sunburnt and a little sunstruck by the end of the day and surrounded by some very rowdy and drunk attendees. Also in both instances not much of the action could actually be seen and most of the time was spent watching the huge screens, so would have been much better off at home away from the drunken fans.
Not so at the soccer! I was very impressed, not only with being able to see everything without having to watch most of it on the screen, but most of all with the behaviour of the fans. My beautiful husband and I went to one of the soccer matches being held as part of the Asian Cup and the supporters, whilst vocal and passionate, were fantastic. One group had drums and chants going, while the opposing supporter base retorted with their own chant, but not once was there any hint of nastiness about any of it. While it’s fairly obvious I am not a huge sports fanatic (yes I am an Aussie!), I found myself looking forward to attending one of the upcoming finals matches as well. Never thought I’d see the day!
A very Happy Australia Day to all!