Devotion shows AFL is ‘more than a game’

by admin on July 22nd, 2018

filed under 南京夜网

SO IT comes down to this.
Nanjing Night Net

After 206 matches, the climax to the AFL season will unfold this afternoon before 90,000-plus people at the MCG, with millions more watching on television.

For AFL fans, it is the biggest and best day of the year. Forget birthdays, forget Christmas, forget New Year’s Day –this is the one that really matters.

The build up to every grand final is dominated by a unique narrative, but this year’s decider has something special about it.

Australia is often criticised for its“tall poppy syndrome”, but this flaw in the national psyche is more than made up for by our love of an underdog.

There are few bigger underdogs in this country’sprofessional sporting landscape than the Western Bulldogs.

The side dubbed “everyone’s second favourite team” last week broke its preliminary final curse to reach a grand final for the first time in 55 years.

Now, despite being given little hope at the start of the year, this resilient and skilful team is aiming to win its firstAFL/VFL premiership since 1954.

Standing in its way is a formidable team, the Sydney Swans, that until recentlyheld the unwanted mantle of the longest premiership drought –72 years.

Since winning the 2005 decider, the Swans –formerly South Melbourne –have appeared in three grand finals, winning one.

Victory today will see themjoin the Brisbane Lions, Geelong and Hawthorn as the greatest teams of the AFL-era.

They say success breeds success and, win or lose, the Western Bulldogs will be hoping this season signalsa permanent change in fortunes.

Of course, nothing less than victory today will satisfy the band of success-starved Bulldogs supporters scatteredacross the country.

Bendigo’s own Bulldogs fanatic Betty Ready was at the ground in 1954 when they won their first and only premiership.

The 90-year-old lives and breathes the Doggies, but today will inevitably carry a tinge of sadness following the passing in July of her husband and fellow Bulldogs supporter, Max.

But stories such as Mrs Ready’s, as well as countless others that have been told this week in the media, show just what AFL means to so many people.

It is truly is “more than a game”.

– Ross Tyson, deputy editor

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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