‘It’s an absolute joke. There’s no way it should be decided after another game. Guys came here for a win or loss, and that’s what we should be leaving with.’ — Nick Maxwell
‘There are three rules for a draw. And it has always been bloody stupid to have a draw in a sport that should always get a result. Five minutes each way is all I have ever wanted.’ — Jason Akermanis
‘Lots of people spend lots of money to see cup finals, not many can afford to do it twice in the same month. They’re entitled to see a result.’ — Comment on Age website.
I well know I shouldn’t be buying into this. But I do recall watching the 1977 Grand Final with a roomful of fans in a house on the coast of the Victorian western district. When the siren went, the silence fell. I said, ‘Does this happen often?’
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In any case, they were all stoic folk and rather amazed, and not long after oddly charmed by the result, another low scoring game. (The same year as the NSWRugby League had a grand final draw, and the year of Torn Between Two Lovers.) So, here we are again, thirty three years later, with blood drawn and a draw on the board.
And what is the big deal? The big deal is calculated with money and time. A function of KPIs. It’s about Me. And me, and me, me, me. Tradition and code counts for … less than a big deal. Let’s not consider how many hundreds of thousands these players are being paid, or how difficult it is in our oh so busy lives to schedule yet another whole, like, two hours to watch a culminating match. What’s in it for me? as a questioner asked of Julia Gillard during a Q&A before the hung election.
I think it’s called history.