Thursday, 7 April 2016

#74 - Sydney Cricket Ground

This one presented a bit of a dilemma for us.  As proud Scots, we have retained a strict aversion to all things cricket related.  I've had countless people insist over the years that I would love cricket if I gave it a chance.  'It's really tactical - you'd love it', 'at least give the 20/20 a chance' and 'it's really just an excuse to sit in the sun drinking beer all day'.  I admit the last point had me tempted.  But no, we stood strong and refused to bow to the pressure.

Then we moved to Australia, and the voices pushing us towards cricket got louder.  However, as they got louder, so too did the voices in my head.  And, as many an unsuspecting stranger has discovered, the voices in my head usually win.  The harder people tried to push us towards cricket, the more we pulled away from it.  So, the presence of the Sydney Cricket Ground in the top 100 caused us a real problem.

Imagine our delight then, when we discovered that, not only does Sydney Cricket Ground host cricket matches, but it also hosted AFL (Australian Rules Football) matches.  The Sydney Swans regularly play home games at the SCG, so we happily bought tickets and headed along to our first live AFL match.

The Grandstand at the Sydney Cricket Ground, thankfully without the cricket
I know this is supposed to be about the ground, but for anyone interested, the AFL is great to watch.  If you're a complete newbie like us, it can take a while to get your head around, but just shout when everyone else does, and you'll get along fine.  The Swans have a great pre-match song as well.  I thoroughly recommend that you learn it before you go and join in the singing before hand.  The song sounds ridiculous the first time you hear it, but you'll soon grow to love it.  Even if you hate AFL, you can just enjoy the beer, and bang the folded up clapper things they hand out for free to irritate the people around you.

As for the ground itself, it is a nice enough ground.  The grandstand is a kind of old fashioned stand, which gives it an interesting look.  The seats, food and everything else in the stadium is pretty much what you would expect from most sports stadiums, and nothing outstanding.  They do also do tours which involve the history of the stadium.  I think it is mostly about cricket, which is why we had no interest.

Not a good game for the Suns...
The short version - don't make a special trip just for the stadium unless you're a huge cricket fan.  If there happens to be an actual sports event on, go for it.  The stadium has a great atmosphere, and is walkable from Central Station.

Want to try and convince us to go and watch cricket?  Are you a Suns fan?  Leave a comment below

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