AFL FOOTBALL FINALS - WEEK 3
Words - Kate Forsyth Photos - J Forsyth
In the words to J Forsyth last week, FIRE UP! This weekend is AFL’s preliminary finals week. No more second chances, it’s do or die as the Herald-Sun would say, because the winners of this weekend’s two games will play in next weekend’s holy grail, the AFL Grandfinal.
Tonight at 7:50pm, Sydney Swans take on Collinwood at ANZ Stadium in Sydney. Saturday, it’s Hawthorn vs. Adelaide at the Melbourne’s Mecca, the MCG. That game starts at 5:15pm, so avoid Punt Road tomorrow people.
It’s a hard thing for many to fathom – the passion that emanates from approximately everyone in Melbourne at this time of year. But don’t try to fathom it, I say, don’t try to understand, just get on board. If you don’t have a team, choose one. If your team didn’t make it this far (like mine didn’t after much early promise), back one that’s still in the contest.
It’s a beautiful game and one which ignites excitement, passion, debate and colour into our city.
When you go to a game, every part of life has sent representatives, similar to the Noah’s ark approach. There’s your executives and rich people wearing suits and being served canapés and Krug in corporate boxes, families with kids who’ve brought glad-wrapped sandwiches to share, awkward teenagers who no longer wear their team’s Guernsey in favour of looking ‘cool’, excited little kids in oversized Guernseys that they'll 'grow into' covered in players’ autographs, elderly people who say the C word while sipping coffee from a thermos, bogans so far down the socio economic scale that they no longer have teeth, hipsters, yuppies, hippies, couples.
If art is about expression, then footy is certainly a form of performance art. It’s a drama between two warring teams, their coaches, supporters and detractors, the mediators (umpires) and the story tellers (commentators and journalists). Each has a part to play and forms a vital element of the spectacle that thousands of people flock to watch in September; AFL’s sacred month.
And if your team didn’t make it this far, you can fully enjoy the spectacle without the nerves, anxiety, anger and outrage that inevitably comes when your team is lucky enough to still be chasing glory in September.
So tune in people! Be part of the drama, fun and excitement, and enjoy the awesome skill of the game. Whatever you do, be sure to back a team, any team! Except Collingwood. Good day.