Title: F - Football - Fever - Fans
Tags: Sport
Blog Entry: F – Football – Fever – Finals – Fans - Females The sport of Football in Australia has been around since 1897 (I’m adding more information on the origins of the game at the end of this Blog). Up until recently Football was played during the winter months by boys at schools and in junior teams and at home or wherever there was a gathering of Boys. If there was a football around it just had to be kicked and marked (Caught).  As they matured they joined teams as ‘Colts’ then graded into the senior games playing for their home town and if they showed excellent qualities they were chosen by the ‘Scouts’ ….men who were on the lookout for good players to join one of the State teams. From here the best are chosen to play for one of the AFL (Australian League Football) teams, which is every boys wish. Football is a Fast and furious game and nothing like the football played in the US. It has similar Character to the Gaelic Football played in Ireland, but with some differences such as the shape of the ball used and a few different rules that I won’t go into here. Supporters are extremely ‘one eyed’ about their Team and during the Football Season, especially the AFL one has to be very careful when talking to an avid supporter. At the moment we are into the Semi- finals play off which leads up to the Grand Final   to be played at the end of September.  The atmosphere is at fever point….The team that I barrack for has done well this season reaching round one of the semi –finals and after their win last weekend are now in the Preliminary Final’s to be played next weekend ….Not sure they will be good enough to reach the finals as they have to play the top very best teams to get into the Grand Final. Also one of their top players was injured on Saturday and won’t be playing again for this season which is quite a blow to the team. As I mentioned earlier up until recently Football was a boys/man’s sport but this past 12 months the Females have formed their own teams and have begun to compete in State Games.  I have to confess that I’m not impressed on seeing the girls play such a rugged sport and what was until now a man’s game.  But such things as ‘equality’ have taken over.  I have tried to watch the Females play but to me it takes away their femineity. However, I realise that it is a sign of the times but many people think along the same lines as I do.  Also the situation has changed regarding the football commentators on the radio, now having a female joining the Group. Once again to me it does not sound right to hear this woman trying to talk like a ‘Macho’ man…I always have my radio on and listen to the games being played while I work in the house. I like the sounds of the Music, social and Sports features. Can’t bear the sound of a ‘silent’ home.  I used to enjoy listening to the Football commentators as they described the game. Their quips, explanations, description.   Most of these commentators are retired AFL Football players and have a good grasp of the game.  Having a Female try to describe the actions in a ‘Macho’ way tends to irritate me, but I’m gradually getting used to it and probably before long I’ll accept.  Alas a sign of Age I guess!! J The Game:   Every Aussie Rules match follows the same format; it is competed between two teams, each of which has 18 players, and four interchange players. Considered a contact sport, AFL is held outdoors on a large oval-shaped grass pitch, and revolves around the advancement of an oval-shaped ball. At each end of the oval are two tall posts and the overall aim of AFL is for a team to score as many goals as they can, by kicking the ball through the opposing team’s goal posts, and to prevent the other team from doing the same – often by obstructing or tackling their opponents. Held in quarters, the winner is the team to have scored the most goals after all four quarters have been played. At the end of each quarter, which lasts 20 minutes, the play rotates and teams attack in the opposite direction. Each Aussie Rules game is overseen by an umpire, who starts the match after a siren goes off, by bouncing the ball on the ground. With every match there are three field umpires, two boundary umpires who conduct throw-ins once the ball is out of play, and two goal umpires who are the official score-keepers. There is also an emergency umpire who can immediately replace any of the umpires if needed. Matches held during the day use a red ball, whereas night time games are played with a yellow ball. The league currently consists of 18 teams spread over five of Australia's six states ( Tasmania being the exception). Matches have been played in all mainland  states and territories of Australia , as well as in  New Zealand  and  China . The AFL season currently consists of a  pre-season competition  (currently branded as the "JLT Community Series"), followed by a 23-round regular (or "home-and-away") season, which runs during the Australian winter (March to September). The top eight teams then play off in a four-round  finals series , culminating in the  AFL Grand Final , which is held at the  Melbourne Cricket Ground  each year. The winning team in the Grand Final is termed the " premiers ", and is awarded the premiership cup. The  relationship between  Australian rules football  and  Gaelic football  is the subject of  controversy  among historians. The question of whether the two  codes of football , from Australia and Ireland respectively, have shared origins arises due to similar styles of play in both games.}