Before I begin, I should explain something: the Living List goal was to go to a cricket match, and so it would be reasonable to assume that meant I hadn’t been to one before. This isn’t quite true – I have been to the cricket many times.
Then dad retired, and I never really got another chance to go to another game. Wait, scratch that, of course I’ve had plenty of chances, I just never made the time. When dad would come visit us in Melbourne, he went in to the MCG, first for a tour and then to catch a day of a test match. And as many times as I’ve been past the MCG in the years we’ve lived down here, the first time I’ve ever been inside was to go to the toilet on the morning of my marathon.
This was before last week. Thanks to Cricket Australia we attended a T20 Big Bash League game between the Melbourne Stars and Sydney Sixers. Before we went, I was faced with a dilemma: am I enough of a NSW-er to go for my old state, or am I a Victorian?
The decision was…
I was amazed at not only the number of people in attendance but the amount of entertainment on offer. At points along the boundary around the ground were various acts – jugglers, hula hoop-ers, balancing acts and more. These would then get shown on the big screen, along with other games and challenges. A lot of kids were seated in our area and there was heavy competition to attract the attention of a nearby cameraman so they could get on the TV. We didn’t, much to Riley’s disappointment.
I haven’t even gotten to the game yet, which turned out to be a real thriller. I’d not seen a game of T20 before, so I wasn’t expecting the fireworks and explosions when the teams came out on the field, or whenever someone got out. There wasn’t a quiet moment between overs or in a changeover in play; you can tell the game is designed to keep everyone engaged in what was happening. No time to get bored here! Once or twice I was so absorbed with something that was happening around the ground I neglected to notice the game had resumed!
During the night, I told stories about my dad and his cricketing adventures. It felt terrific to be able to do so in that forum, and in that way. It’s been almost six years since his passing. Time goes so fast, doesn’t it? Sharing is remembering. I hope I always do.
Thank you, Cricket Australia.