- Dec 6, 2014
- AFL Club
- St Kilda
Rugby Sevens plays 14 minute games consisting of two 7 minutes halves, and draws close to 750,000 people through the gate across 10 tournaments. While the inception of the sport can be traced back to 1883, it really was considered gimmicky for a very long time before it's current format evolved out of what was really a marketing event for Rothman's Tobacco in 1976 Hong Kong. Today, it is a fast growing sport, that attracts world class athletes, and is touted as one of the worlds emerging premier sporting events.I think my biggest issue with AFLX (other than the fashion show they’ve just introduced) is that each match goes for a total of 20 mins.
I don’t care how many gimmicks you throw into it, each game being less than a qtr of AFL is not a game at all. Why even have a bench? 10mins on, break, another 10 mins on. That’s a walk in the park for anyone in the TAC cup, let alone the AFL.
How much can any sport actually hope to engage fan with such little time for the players to actually do anything?
The abbreviated format of the game means that minnow countries are more competitive and it has truly flourished as an international sport. The popularity of the format amongst member countries has seen it become a Commonwealth and Olympic event. Fiji won a gold medal (it's solitary Olympic medal after participating at 14 summer games and 3 winter games) at the Olympics in 2016 which has arguably elevated the format to being recognized as our national sport, above the traditional 15 man format of the game.
So, long story short, who knows where AFLX could go? Has the AFL got it right? No, I don't think so. But, it could have a very big future, and you will never know unless you try.