Aussie Rules Football…or should that be Women Rule!

Adelaide Crows Football ClubAustralian Rules Football season is on us and the men’s teams are battling it out each week to be top dogs in our national sport. To go and watch a game at its highest level is an exhilarating outing, even if you are not entirely sure of the rules (who is?) the spectacle of colour, noise and passion is something to behold.  I’m not a fan of crowds but the stadiums the games are held in aren’t too bad for getting crowds in and out without too much fuss.

The Adelaide oval is something I would recommend any visitor to Adelaide should see at any time but a football match does have an extra gladiatorial vibe about it. Making the trek across the bridge over the Torrens River is part of the process and gives you the chance to see other city sights along the banks of the river including the Festival Theatre, the paddle boats and ‘Popeye’ on the Torrens.

This year I had the pleasure of watching a couple of the women’s AFL games at the Adelaide Oval. The skills are every bit as impressive as their male counterparts and the crowds just as passionate for their teams. You never know who you might get to share the experience with too. We were lucky to have the very obliging Keith Conlon OAM share a photo with us. Keith was the presenter of a television show ‘Postcards’ for more than 15 years, promoting holiday spots in South Australia, so naturally I’m a fan.  His knowledge and love of the state saw him given the tag of ‘Mr South Australia’ by locals, such is the respect for him.

And so to the rest of the atmosphere at the oval, it is a spine tingling experience and it feels quite exciting to be at the beginnings of a shift in sport. The women’s league of the AFL has only been going for 3 seasons now but each year the following and interest grows and it’s having a ripple effect of increasing the involvement by girls and women in grass roots football. I’m a very proud supporter of my own daughter who was a member of a local inaugural women’s team last year and is going for another season again this year.

The professional women’s AFL matches that I went to see were the final and Grand Final. The Grand Final was an uplifting day to say the least and before the match the crowd was entertained by Amy Shark, an Aussie artist who sang three of her most popular songs to rev up the crowd.  I particularly like the fact that Amy took part in the pre-game entertainment after reading ugly remarks made after the ‘amazing photo’ of football player Tayla Harris received. (That’s a whole story to look up in its own right). It made her want to support the game even more. Here, here.

The day had a party atmosphere about it and the predicted crowd of 20,000 soon swelled to over 53,000! A record number of spectators for any women’s sport in Australia. The two teams battling it out for the premiership cup were the Adelaide Crows and Carlton, with Tayla Harris one of the team.

It was an incredible spectacle of skills and gutsy play by these champion women, everyone in the crowd no matter what age or gender were absolutely enthralled for the entire game. I’m happy to say the victors were Adelaide but sadly not without knee injuries to two players. Nothing hurts when you are winners though I’m guessing. I have to apologise for the very ordinary photos in the blog but unfortunately they were only taken on a phone (no cameras allowed in Adelaide Oval), but I will leave the last word to the Adelaide daily newspaper, The Advertiser cartoonist Valdman. Women’s football…take that.

Valdman cartoonGlenys


8 thoughts on “Aussie Rules Football…or should that be Women Rule!

  1. Wow how exciting to have been there,especially when your girls won. And what a spectacular turn out, 53,000. I follow the eagles but really am a bit half hearted when watching on Tele. That changes though at a live match, I often don’t know what’s going on and I also don’t usually like crowds. But I just love the atmosphere.i hope we never get like Europe were supporters have to be separated into different areas.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Going to a footy match has been on my to do list for a while now. To be precise since I started living in Australia in 1991 …. some day I’ll make it! I am not a footy fan but I find crowds interesting to watch. I remember the first (of a very small number) soccer match I saw was Liverpool v Man United in Wembley —– I don’t think I ever worked out which team was which but loved watching the crowd. My brothers, keen soccer fans who hadn’t been to a match at that stage, were disgusted that I wasted a ticket in this manner (it wasn’t an option that I give it to one of them).

    Liked by 2 people

  3. No cameras? Why is that and don’t they know we all want to write about our experiences and share the joy? Have you ever done the guided tour of Adelaide Oval? It’s very enjoyable and interesting. Isn’t it great that women’s football is really taking off. As for the men’s competition I’m delighted to say that after two rounds I’m in second place in the family and friends tipping competition. I’m basking in the glory because it might not last long!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Too many professionals walking about with cameras to capture the action I guess. I’m yet to do the guided tour of the oval and there is no way I would do the roof climb, but people were on the day of the grand final too.
      We’ve loved watching the rise of women’s footy, absolutely love it. Congratulations on your great start to footy tipping too, rub it in while you can!


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