Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Go Socceroos!

Aussie Aussie Aussie Oy Oy Oy!
Yeehah ... Australia just qualified for the soccer World Cup!
You're not going to believe the coverage it's going to get in this country. From now until the tournament in Germany next year it's going to be soccer soccer soccer. For too long the world game has been a second cousin to rugby and AFL here, but this is going to boost it unbelievably.
My local archery club was absolutely swamped when Australia won a gold medal in 2000, as parents herded their budding Robin Hoods in for their chance at fame and fortune. Now everywhere you go you'll see kids in green and gold booting soccer balls around.

Update: It seems SBS captured 36% of the Australian TV-watching audience last night, and the peak viewing audience matched those for the opening and closing ceremonies at the Sydney Olympics in 2000. For decades SBS has been plugging away with soccer while the other channels (ie. the ones most people watch) completely ignored it. All I can say is HAH!
Aussie newspapers are reporting a 40% spike in visits to their sites as people get to work and catch up on the aftermath of the game, and on the Age website I notice that eight of the top ten most viewed articles are soccer-related - the first seven plus the ninth. (The other two are probably stories on how soccer balls are made.)
Sydney is planning a ticker-tape parade - perhaps as early as tomorrow (most of the Socceroos play for european clubs, and will need to get back 'home' for their weekend games.)
Australia is a sport-mad country, there's no doubt about it.

Simon Haynes is the author of the Hal Spacejock and Hal Junior series (Amazon / Smashwords / other formats)

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