On Saturday I attended my third ever Big Bash League game and the first game I’ve attended of BBL05, the Melbourne Derby at Etihad Stadium.
I was wrong about the BBL. I said it wouldn’t last five years. As a result I’m more than happy to put my hand up and be the one with egg on my face.
Saturday night shaped to be a cracker of a clash – two teams who had the week before played in front of 80,000 fans, both sides desperate for a win to keep their finals hopes alive and a sold out Etihad Stadium. The atmosphere promised to be electric.
If the atmosphere at Etihad was electric on Saturday night I must have been in the wrong building. At best I thought the experience on Saturday night lacked respect for the sport.
Test Cricket is my cricket of choice, it always has been and it always will be. As a fan of the sport I was shocked to find that for the majority of the crowd the sport wasn’t the main drawcard.
Cheering when people threw a paper plane onto the field, doing the wave and hitting beach balls. That is a comprehensive list of things that got a louder cheer than any of the on-field action.
Perhaps I’m old and grumpy but I paid for a ticket to a sporting contest and not to a convention for people who are looking to irritate members of the general public.
Things such as knowing who won the toss and being able to have a conversation about the game with the person next to me clearly aren’t big selling points for the Melbourne Renegades as they decided to blast music at every opportunity, rather than allowing the crowd to get caught up in the action.
My tip? If you’re a cricket fan who wants to actually watch and enjoy the game the best place to do it is from the comfort of your own home.