What unpopular AFL opinions do you have? - Part 2

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telsor

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I always find it funny when people say things aren't 'AFL standard'. What exactly is AFL standard? Bournemouth played in the premier league until this season in a stadium that holds 12 thousand people in a league that has $6 Billion in revenue a year. Have you seen the Buffalo Bills stadium? Sure it holds 70k but is literally in the middle of nowhere, and the seats are metal bleachers. The NFL is the richest league in the world.
'Not AFL standard' :rolleyes:
2 issues.

The first is a philosophical one...Do you want the game to be for the crowd, or for the TV audience? Globally, sport is moving more and more to broadcast, but getting those additional people, helps redress the balance and force the league to consider those who attend as a major feature.

What is the ticket price? Simple supply and demand mean bigger grounds tend to be cheaper and consequently more accessible.
 

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royboy2

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I always find it funny when people say things aren't 'AFL standard'. What exactly is AFL standard? Bournemouth played in the premier league until this season in a stadium that holds 12 thousand people in a league that has $6 Billion in revenue a year. Have you seen the Buffalo Bills stadium? Sure it holds 70k but is literally in the middle of nowhere, and the seats are metal bleachers. The NFL is the richest league in the world.
'Not AFL standard' :rolleyes:
You can say that again
 

TheRealComptroller

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Watching hours of FoxFooty over their summer of re-runs confirms to me that any dynasty team of the past would most likely get trounced by the subsequent dynasty team. As much as I was in awe of the Lions of 2001-04 and completely admired their devastating offensive weaponry and skills - Voss, Aker, Black, Leppa etc were scintillating to watch - they'd be totally blanketed by the sustained pressure and turnover scoring of 2020 top level footy. In fact I've got no doubt that the Cats of 07-11 would've beaten that incredible Lions machine, and then the Hawks of 12-15 stepped it up another notch from there. Similarly the next batch of innovations, preparation and strategies will undoubtedly supercede what has become the dominant extreme high/extreme low-structured playing style of the Tigers thoughout 2017-20.
This reminds me of an article from 2007 where IIRC Champion Data did a modern statistical analysis of the 1989 GF.

I think they basically implied that those Hawks/Cats teams would have been utterly destroyed if they were dropped into the 2007 competition. The amount of skill errors was epic; apparently those teams’ clanger counts were way higher than the worst performing teams in 2007.

I also remember Aker saying in the mid 2000s the speed of the game was already vastly greater than from the start of his career in 1995. I guess he was implying that a great team from the mid 1990s would be unspectacular by 2003.
 

megadeth86

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Jul 15, 2020
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I always find it funny when people say things aren't 'AFL standard'. What exactly is AFL standard? Bournemouth played in the premier league until this season in a stadium that holds 12 thousand people in a league that has $6 Billion in revenue a year. Have you seen the Buffalo Bills stadium? Sure it holds 70k but is literally in the middle of nowhere, and the seats are metal bleachers. The NFL is the richest league in the world.
'Not AFL standard' :rolleyes:
Look at the Scottish Premier League: Livingston and Hamilton play in front of crowds of 1,000 to 2,000 (obviously they get no crowds at all now due to lockdown). This is in a league with two huge clubs, three medium-sized clubs and a handful of tiny clubs. I see no reason suburban grounds can't be used again in AFL except for people's demand for comfort and people's hatred of anything traditional.
 

Richo83

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Look at the Scottish Premier League: Livingston and Hamilton play in front of crowds of 1,000 to 2,000 (obviously they get no crowds at all now due to lockdown). This is in a league with two huge clubs, three medium-sized clubs and a handful of tiny clubs. I see no reason suburban grounds can't be used again in AFL except for people's demand for comfort and people's hatred of anything traditional.
How many teams actually want to go back to their suburban grounds though?

Carlton - maybe can justify a move back to Princes Park, but they'd still need to play 3-4 games at the MCG and I'm not sure the AFL want to spend that money for 7-8 matches.
Collingwood - love the MCG and they get the crowds to justify it.
Essendon - Love Docklands and get the crowds to justify it. Play a few matches each year at the MCG too.
Footscray - one of the first adopters of Docklands as it gives them better access to all of the western suburbs through its connection to public transport.
Hawthorn - their old suburban ground was Waverley which was a dump. Their situation of MCG and Tasmania makes sense and they get the crowds to justify it.
Melbourne - traditional MCG tenant anyway.
North - Maybe justified, but they're playing matches in Tasmania, again would the AFL want to put in effort to make Arden St possible for 7-8 matches?
Richmond - love the MCG and they get the crowds to justify it, and have been playing there for decades.
St Kilda - They like Docklands. Gives them less of a regional reach in Melbourne and saints fans seem to like the ground.

So maybe two or three? And yes, fans are expecting more from stadiums than ever before. Perth and Adelaide have updated their stadiums, even though AAMI and Subiaco were arguably in better shape than most suburban grounds. Geelong is updating its ground so it's a more modern ground with better services. The AFL is moving towards better stadiums not worse. And the only reason why the AFL does justify Kardinia Park is because it's literally in another city. It's not a suburban ground, it's the city's ground.

The problem with many suburban grounds is that it's hard for some of them to be accessed via public transport and having 20,000-30,000 in some suburban street means there's a lot of traffic and/or need to improve rail facilities. The MCG and Docklands are designed to be accessed by almost every Melburnian easily. There's a reason why they're centrally located in Melbourne's hub and spoke rail system. Like Princes Park isn't near a train station. You have to catch a tram which puts pressure on Melbourne's already strained tram network. It will have a train station soon, and maybe it gets revived. But that's one out of nine. Windy Hill would be a pain to get to for a lot of fans.

The other problem with this idea is that Docklands and the MCG are relatively popular with fans. I know bigfooty hates Docklands but bigfooty is not representative of wider society. It would also undercut the business model of Docklands and the MCG and the AFL have agreements with these two partners, and why would they want to undermine them and not make these stadiums profitable?
 
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megadeth86

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How many teams actually want to go back to their suburban grounds though?

Carlton - maybe can justify a move back to Princes Park, but they'd still need to play 3-4 games at the MCG and I'm not sure the AFL want to spend that money for 7-8 matches.
Collingwood - love the MCG and they get the crowds to justify it.
Essendon - Love Docklands and get the crowds to justify it. Play a few matches each year at the MCG too.
Footscray - one of the first adopters of Docklands as it gives them better access to all of the western suburbs through its connection to public transport.
Hawthorn - their old suburban ground was Waverley which was a dump. Their situation of MCG and Tasmania makes sense and they get the crowds to justify it.
Melbourne - traditional MCG tenant anyway.
North - Maybe justified, but they're playing matches in Tasmania, again would the AFL want to put in effort to make Arden St possible for 7-8 matches?
Richmond - love the MCG and they get the crowds to justify it, and have been playing there for decades.
St Kilda - They like Docklands. Gives them less of a regional reach in Melbourne and saints fans seem to like the ground.

So maybe two or three? And yes, fans are expecting more from stadiums than ever before. Perth and Adelaide have updated their stadiums, even though AAMI and Subiaco were arguably in better shape than most suburban grounds. Geelong is updating its ground so it's a more modern ground with better services. The AFL is moving towards better stadiums not worse. And the only reason why the AFL does justify Kardinia Park is because it's literally in another city. It's not a suburban ground, it's the city's ground.

The problem with many suburban grounds is that it's hard for some of them to be accessed via public transport and having 20,000-30,000 in some suburban street means there's a lot of traffic and/or need to improve rail facilities. The MCG and Docklands are designed to be accessed by almost every Melburnian easily. There's a reason why they're centrally located in Melbourne's hub and spoke rail system. Like Princes Park isn't near a train station. You have to catch a tram which puts pressure on Melbourne's already strained tram network. It will have a train station soon, and maybe it gets revived. But that's one out of nine. Windy Hill would be a pain to get to for a lot of fans.

The other problem with this idea is that Docklands and the MCG are relatively popular with fans. I know bigfooty hates Docklands but bigfooty is not representative of wider society. It would also undercut the business model of Docklands and the MCG and the AFL have agreements with these two partners, and why would they want to undermine them and not make these stadiums profitable?
All of this might be correct and valid, but surely one or two games a year at these venues would give (older) supporters heaps of pleasure at minimal cost?
 

Virgin Dog

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Club culture at a local level is quite toxic, and scares away a lot of potential new/returning players. I've never seen a local club that doesn't have a boys club ingrained. There's an expectation that you stay behind after the game for beers, become best mates with half the team and go on the end of year trip to Bali. It seems to be unique to footy, as I've never experienced this with any other sport. It's great if that's where you've played your footy half your life, but when moving to a new club, it's quite off-putting. If you want to play basketball casually, you can easily find a local team where you can play once a week, MAYBE train once a week and basically just leave it at that. There's no such opportunity with footy. It's an all-or-nothing environment, and effectively excludes those with tough work schedules, family responsibilities or who just don't have an interest in dedicating themselves to 3 times per week for the one hobby.
 
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Blackhawk42

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Club culture at a local level is quite toxic, and scares away a lot of potential new/returning players. I've never seen a local club that doesn't have a boys club ingrained. There's an expectation that you stay behind after the game for beers, become best mates with half the team and go on the end of year trip to Bali. It seems to be unique to footy, as I've never experienced this with any other sport. It's great if that's where you've played your footy half your life, but when moving to a new club, it's quite off-putting. If you want to play basketball casually, you can easily find a local team where you can play once a week, MAYBE train once a week and basically just leave it at that. There's no such opportunity with footy. It's an all-or-nothing environment, and effectively excludes those with tough work schedules, family responsibilities or who just don't have an interest in dedicating themselves to 3 times per week for the one hobby.
After missing a year of it due to Covid but playing some social sport to compensate I can absolutely state that I wouldn't change anything about what you described. Being part of a football club with a strong culture is rewarding, motivating and provides a lifetime of memories.

PS. The good clubs with solid cultures will embrace new people correctly and make them feel at home from the beginning.
 

Virgin Dog

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After missing a year of it due to Covid but playing some social sport to compensate I can absolutely state that I wouldn't change anything about what you described. Being part of a football club with a strong culture is rewarding, motivating and provides a lifetime of memories.

PS. The good clubs with solid cultures will embrace new people correctly and make them feel at home from the beginning.
The inclusiveness is great, but can prove overbearing. It's not great feeling pressured/judged for not being 100% committed to the footy club like others are. Some people just want to play socially, and I couldn't tell you how many guys I've seen over the years who come and join in enthusiastically, but drop off within a month or two because there was so much pressure to never miss a session and to dedicate your entire Saturday to the footy. The community isn't so much a problem, it's the all-or-nothing mindset that is rampant throughout local footy
 

Blackhawk42

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The inclusiveness is great, but can prove overbearing. It's not great feeling pressured/judged for not being 100% committed to the footy club like others are. Some people just want to play socially, and I couldn't tell you how many guys I've seen over the years who come and join in enthusiastically, but drop off within a month or two because there was so much pressure to never miss a session and to dedicate your entire Saturday to the footy. The community isn't so much a problem, it's the all-or-nothing mindset that is rampant throughout local footy
Yeah, when you are fully invested it's fantastic. The only way to be 'social' with it but still popular with the group is to have that crazy personality that everybody wants around all the time. Those blokes are rare though.

I've found those clubs you referring to are probably pretty successful and drive high standards also. The 'casuals' get a lot more leniency when the club is performing poorly, but maybe that's just a personal experience.
 

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Richo83

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All of this might be correct and valid, but surely one or two games a year at these venues would give (older) supporters heaps of pleasure at minimal cost?
Maybe. But Your general point about how "I see no reason suburban grounds can't be used again in AFL except for people's demand for comfort and people's hatred of anything traditional." I'm sorry but this decision has nothing to do with the hatred of tradition. It has to do with the AFL wanting two good stadiums which are accessible. It also means that the AFL can cut deals with two stadiums and provide them with the matches to make them viable, rather than deal with a variety of stadiums. It's also just easier to maintain two stadiums than a variety of suburban grounds.

Maybe the AFL should host some games at Princes Park, but I know Docklands won't be happy and, again, for many fans they actually prefer Docklands' accessibility.

You sniff at the idea of comfort, but the AFL wanted two grounds which had the kind of services which would appeal to a wide array of fans. Docklands has a roof which means fans will still attend even if it rains unlike Waverley, it has enough corporate facilities to make money and the seats are actually close to the action and are, you know, seats. Not benches which get saturated in the rain and make your bum sore. Not many people are keen on spending $30 upwards for a bench seat. When families go to the footy, they have to pay for public transport/parking, most likely get some food and it's a whole day outing. If you're going to get them to the football, it'd help if the stadium wasn't a) hard to get to and b) a dump.

Like I can handle people picking on the AFL when they do things which make them money but hurt the fans. But the rationalisation has actually helped fans in many ways. Docklands is accessible to people from Melbourne and Geelong. It has a number of transport routes and it is surrounded by facilities.

I notice some other posters mentioned the likes of Bournemouth and Buffalo, those leagues don't have nine teams in one city where ground rationalisation can happen. You build a new stadium for Buffalo, and one team is catered for. Docklands serves up to nine teams and every Melburnian team has hosted there. Plus, NFL teams have the financial power to build their own stadiums. How many AFL sides have the money to do likewise? Given the AFL in concert with governments builds these things, they're going to make them suitable for as many clubs as possible, not just one.
 
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megadeth86

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Maybe. But Your general point about how "I see no reason suburban grounds can't be used again in AFL except for people's demand for comfort and people's hatred of anything traditional." I'm sorry but this decision has nothing to do with the hatred of tradition. It has to do with the AFL wanting two good stadiums which are accessible. It also means that the AFL can cut deals with two stadiums and provide them with the matches to make them viable, rather than deal with a variety of stadiums. It's also just easier to maintain two stadiums than a variety of suburban grounds.

Maybe the AFL should host some games at Princes Park, but I know Docklands won't be happy and, again, for many fans they actually prefer Docklands' accessibility.

You sniff at the idea of comfort, but the AFL wanted two grounds which had the kind of services which would appeal to a wide array of fans. Docklands has a roof which means fans will still attend even if it rains unlike Waverley, it has enough corporate facilities to make money and the seats are actually close to the action and are, you know, seats. Not benches which get saturated in the rain and make your bum sore. Not many people are keen on spending $30 upwards for a bench seat. When families go to the footy, they have to pay for public transport/parking, most likely get some food and it's a whole day outing. If you're going to get them to the football, it'd help if the stadium wasn't a) hard to get to and b) a dump.

Like I can handle people picking on the AFL when they do things which make them money but hurt the fans. But the rationalisation has actually helped fans in many ways. Docklands is accessible to people from Melbourne and Geelong. It has a number of transport routes and it is surrounded by facilities.

I notice some other posters mentioned the likes of Bournemouth and Buffalo, those leagues don't have nine teams in one city where ground rationalisation can happen. You build a new stadium for Buffalo, and one team is catered for. Docklands serves up to nine teams and every Melburnian team has hosted there. Plus, NFL teams have the financial power to build their own stadiums. How many AFL sides have the money to do likewise? Given the AFL in concert with governments builds these things, they're going to make them suitable for as many clubs as possible, not just one.
OK, this is a serious question for you. Us older ones we remember the suburban grounds but say in 60 years' time when we are all gone, do you think the clubs will became meaningless entities because the links to the districts have disappeared in people's memories? The clubs will be like Team A and Team B or the Black-and-whites and red-and-blacks? I might be wrong about this and i hope time will prove me wrong, it's just a concern.
 

Richo83

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OK, this is a serious question for you. Us older ones we remember the suburban grounds but say in 60 years' time when we are all gone, do you think the clubs will became meaningless entities because the links to the districts have disappeared in people's memories? The clubs will be like Team A and Team B or the Black-and-whites and red-and-blacks? I might be wrong about this and i hope time will prove me wrong, it's just a concern.
I get where you're coming from, but I still think the suburban clubs have their own identities, names, geographical locations, colours etc. They brand themselves very differently. Note that no two clubs in Victoria have the same colours and/or their jumpers are different so there's something to differentiate them. Their jumpers are quite distinct and haven't changed much giving them that brand identity. They also try and appeal to different sections of the city. St Kilda doesn't try and appeal to western suburbs fans because it's just unlikely it'll ever get traction.

This is different to European and American leagues where there's more similarities. There's a lot of blue shirt teams in American leagues and a lot of red jumper with stripes or red jumper teams in Europe. There's four teams which wear a blue shirt in the EPL. I'd rather follow a team with a unique look than a team with a unique home ground and I think teams are realising that brand identity matters.

What is lost is that sense of home ground advantage which was a real thing. Back in the day some teams didn't lose at home to particular sides for decades. But I think clubs can endure that.

I think superstars also give teams an identity and that hasn't been lost, and arguably superstar appeal has increased with social media, fantasy footy and constant coverage. I think what may undermine team loyalty especially in the younger generations is the tendency for some to support players rather than teams. But I still see a lot of young kids wearing team colours.
 

HairyO

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Watching hours of FoxFooty over their summer of re-runs confirms to me that any dynasty team of the past would most likely get trounced by the subsequent dynasty team. As much as I was in awe of the Lions of 2001-04 and completely admired their devastating offensive weaponry and skills - Voss, Aker, Black, Leppa etc were scintillating to watch - they'd be totally blanketed by the sustained pressure and turnover scoring of 2020 top level footy. In fact I've got no doubt that the Cats of 07-11 would've beaten that incredible Lions machine, and then the Hawks of 12-15 stepped it up another notch from there. Similarly the next batch of innovations, preparation and strategies will undoubtedly supercede what has become the dominant extreme high/extreme low-structured playing style of the Tigers thoughout 2017-20.
They would be incapable of learning a new game plan?
 

megadeth86

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Maybe. But Your general point about how "I see no reason suburban grounds can't be used again in AFL except for people's demand for comfort and people's hatred of anything traditional." I'm sorry but this decision has nothing to do with the hatred of tradition. It has to do with the AFL wanting two good stadiums which are accessible. It also means that the AFL can cut deals with two stadiums and provide them with the matches to make them viable, rather than deal with a variety of stadiums. It's also just easier to maintain two stadiums than a variety of suburban grounds.

Maybe the AFL should host some games at Princes Park, but I know Docklands won't be happy and, again, for many fans they actually prefer Docklands' accessibility.

You sniff at the idea of comfort, but the AFL wanted two grounds which had the kind of services which would appeal to a wide array of fans. Docklands has a roof which means fans will still attend even if it rains unlike Waverley, it has enough corporate facilities to make money and the seats are actually close to the action and are, you know, seats. Not benches which get saturated in the rain and make your bum sore. Not many people are keen on spending $30 upwards for a bench seat. When families go to the footy, they have to pay for public transport/parking, most likely get some food and it's a whole day outing. If you're going to get them to the football, it'd help if the stadium wasn't a) hard to get to and b) a dump.

Like I can handle people picking on the AFL when they do things which make them money but hurt the fans. But the rationalisation has actually helped fans in many ways. Docklands is accessible to people from Melbourne and Geelong. It has a number of transport routes and it is surrounded by facilities.

I notice some other posters mentioned the likes of Bournemouth and Buffalo, those leagues don't have nine teams in one city where ground rationalisation can happen. You build a new stadium for Buffalo, and one team is catered for. Docklands serves up to nine teams and every Melburnian team has hosted there. Plus, NFL teams have the financial power to build their own stadiums. How many AFL sides have the money to do likewise? Given the AFL in concert with governments builds these things, they're going to make them suitable for as many clubs as possible, not just one.
London has 13 soccer clubs of all sizes - as far as I'm aware each one has its own stadium. So your criticism of the Bournemouth and Buffalo examples aren't as persuasive as you think they might be for killing off the suburban grounds.
 

Richo83

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London has 13 soccer clubs of all sizes - as far as I'm aware each one has its own stadium. So your criticism of the Bournemouth and Buffalo examples aren't as persuasive as you think they might be for killing off the suburban grounds.
Yeah and many of those stadiums are absolute dumps. Many of them don't have the facilities to actually generate revenue to ensure the club has a sustainable ability to remain in the EPL.

One big difference is the FA uses a promotion and relegation system, meaning if the FA were to invest in money consolidating grounds, they'd have to do it for dozens of clubs and there's too many teams for consolidation to work.

However, the AFL doesn't use promotion and in many instances, there's only maybe four or five at maximum Victorian teams playing in Victoria every round. Consolidation is easier when you've got a fixed number of teams and we know where the teams are located.

There's also more than 13 London teams. There's six in the EPL, three in the Championship, two in League One, one in League two and dozens in the lower leagues. If you build stadiums for the top four divisions, that undermines the growth of the teams in the lower leagues. It's also a massive disadvantage for the non-London teams in the leagues.

I think the AFL is more similar to the NFL in that it's a league without promotion or relegation and strives for equality and lacks the European culture of team connected to ground and place. The difference between the NFL and AFL is the NFL doesn't have nine teams in one city. However, if it did, I think you'd find consolidation. They're doing it with the rams and chargers playing out of one stadium, and the two New York NFL teams also share grounds. You only have to look at how New York teams used to share the Polo Grounds to see that ground sharing isn't some unheard of idea. The only reason why it doesn't happen as much in New York anymore is because New York bled teams to California as the American leagues shifted right mirroring the western demographic shift.

Don't forget, Docklands was also built to be an entertainment hub and they ensured it could be used for everything. Again, it goes back to that idea that AFL realised grounds needed to be viable to stay open and wanted to reduce upkeep costs.
 
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jc12

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Jun 9, 2014
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My unpopular opinion , and it may be bias , but you losers who hate Trent Cotchin are weirdos who probably have no lives. This guy is legit the most clean skined player you'll ever get in footy. Yet you hate him because he went for a ball and accidentally hurt someone like 1000s did before him. Or you hate him because he got tagged out in a game one time like 1000s did before him. You lot are stupid
 

footyfan1978

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The inclusiveness is great, but can prove overbearing. It's not great feeling pressured/judged for not being 100% committed to the footy club like others are. Some people just want to play socially, and I couldn't tell you how many guys I've seen over the years who come and join in enthusiastically, but drop off within a month or two because there was so much pressure to never miss a session and to dedicate your entire Saturday to the footy. The community isn't so much a problem, it's the all-or-nothing mindset that is rampant throughout local footy
This is not just a football club thing. Cricket club can be the same. If you playing cricket, there is a tendency to stay back and drink at the club afterwards, sometimes to all hours and all your Saturday is gone to playing and socializing at your cricket club. It is not a bad thing and people understand in most clubs not everyone is going to do that, or want to do it or can do it. Sounds like you make yourself feels like you are obliged which really sounds like an issue with yourself. Whether it be football, netball, cricket, table tennis or ten pin bowling or lawn balls it is more about the Australian culture of sport, that a lot of people like to socialize after the game too. It is actually sad at AFL level players from both clubs and umpires cannot really do that like they once did.
 

north_lad

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My unpopular opinion , and it may be bias , but you losers who hate Trent Cotchin are weirdos who probably have no lives. This guy is legit the most clean skined player you'll ever get in footy. Yet you hate him because he went for a ball and accidentally hurt someone like 1000s did before him. Or you hate him because he got tagged out in a game one time like 1000s did before him. You lot are stupid
My very popular opinion - Richmond fans are ******* crybabies
 

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