Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Leigh Gillespi » Wed, 27 Aug 1997 04:00:00


        You may remember that earlier this year I abandoned trying post
accurate schedules for the leagues because of the persistant chopping and
changing. Neither of them could get an accurate draw available publicly
(reaching a ridiculous level when even the ARL web site was wrong less
then five days before the round was to be played) meaning the number of
errors in the posts was beoming counter-productive. Anyway that's a long
way of leading up to saying with only two or three matches in either comp
during the finals surely they can't stuff it up now (he types with crossed
fingers). Either way I hope that whoever is in charge next season can work
out when the matches are to be played with plenty of notice. And now...

* Saturday, August 30th 1997

   CRONULLA vs CANBERRA at Shark Park - 6.00pm

* Monday, September 1st 1997

   CANTERBURY vs PENRITH at Belmore Sports Ground - 7.30pm

Catchya round, Leigh

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
* Leigh T. Gillespie                  *    "It takes leather balls      *
* Phone - Australia (077) 791219      *     to play Rugby!"             *

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Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by James Smi » Wed, 27 Aug 1997 04:00:00

Quote:
Leigh Gillespie writes:
>    CRONULLA vs CANBERRA at Shark Park - 6.00pm
>    CANTERBURY vs PENRITH at Belmore Sports Ground - 7.30pm

It's interesting to see that SL have changed their scheduling policy
for the finals. At the start of the year these matches were scheduled
for Stockland Stadium and the Sydney Football Stadium respectively.

Jim
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Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Leigh Gillespi » Wed, 27 Aug 1997 04:00:00


Quote:
> Leigh Gillespie writes:

>>    CRONULLA vs CANBERRA at Shark Park - 6.00pm
>>    CANTERBURY vs PENRITH at Belmore Sports Ground - 7.30pm

> It's interesting to see that SL have changed their scheduling policy
> for the finals. At the start of the year these matches were scheduled
> for Stockland Stadium and the Sydney Football Stadium respectively.

        The change was first announced about eight weeks ago. At the time
they said that the matches has only previously been "pencilled in" for
those venues. Obviously it would have been disappointing for me
personally to miss out on seeing a finals match live (my only previous one
being Canterbury vs St George in a major semi-final at the SCG back in
1985 when I was too young to really take it in) but as a staunch
supporters of home finals allocation I prefer the current system.
Fortunately the way the cards have fallen I'll still end up seeing a match
and it's going to be a better ,(or at keast more important) one anyway.
        The above said I still don't entirely agree with SL's method of
allocating finals. Firstly SL have said that all finals matches will be
hosted by the higher finishing side. IMO that is not quite the right way
to go about it. Yes that's the way the matches should be allocated in week
one but in subsequent weeks they should be allocated based on performance
in the finals. The only place this will make a difference is in the
allocation of the preliminary final. IMO that should be allocated to the
loser of the major semi-final as opposed to just the higher placed team.
Here's the system I'd use...

A: 4TH vs 5TH at 4th
B: 2ND vs 3RD at 2nd

C: LOSER B vs WINNER A at Loser B  <-----
D: 1ST vs WINNER B at 1st

E: LOSER D vs WINNER C at Loser D  <-----

D: GRAND FINAL - WINNER D vs WINNER E at SFS

        In reality this could only cause a change of venue for one match,
E, and even then that would depend on the result of B. But what it means
is if 3rd beats 2nd and then loses to 1st, and the 2nd place side wins
thru for a rematch against 3rd in the the preliminary final (E) then 3rd
would host the match instead of 2nd. IMO the 3rd place side will have
earned the right to host the match by virtue of beating the 2nd placed
side in the first week. By this method if you finish in the top two you
are guaranteed at least one home semi with a chance at a second. If you
finish third, you're guaranteed either one semi or you'll qualify first
with a weeks break for the Grand Final. If you finish forth you'll only
get one semi and if you finish fifth, tough. The difference being that
third place gets a better go because before they could miss out on the
Grand Final and also not get a semi final at all - the same as fifth.
        The second point of the SL allocating system I don't agree with is
the decision to play finals matches at each sides actual home ground.
This means we are now seeing finals matches at Belmore and Shark Park. IMO
these matches should still be played at the SFS or Parra Stadium. Those
grounds have bigger capacities and better facilities. Suburban venues like
Belmore, Kogarah, North Sydney, Campbelltown etc aren't fit for hosting
finals IMO. The primary reason of allocating finals shouldn't be strictly
to give sides a home ground advantage but to give the fans equal
opportunity to see their club play in finals and thereby give give a home
*crowd* advantage. Play the matches at the best stadium available in the
host city to give as many fans as possible the opportunity to see their
side play in the finals.

Catchya round, Leigh

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
* Leigh T. Gillespie                  *    "It takes leather balls      *
* Phone - Australia (077) 791219      *     to play Rugby!"             *

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by CHRISTOPHER CO » Wed, 27 Aug 1997 04:00:00


Quote:
> CHRISTOPHER COX writes:

> >> It's interesting to see that SL have changed their scheduling policy
> >> for the finals. At the start of the year these matches were scheduled
> >> for Stockland Stadium and the Sydney Football Stadium respectively.

> > A big deal was made of Super League changing their scheduling to provide
> > home finals.  I thought you would've been aware of this.

> I had a feeling they were using home finals, but I didn't realise
> they'd actually changed their scheduling to accomodate them. When
> I sw the original schedulng I figured I must have been wrong. I
> don't rememberany fuss, so I guess it only goes to show...something. :-)

Leigh explained the situation pretty clearly earlier so I won't recap.  I
guess it shows that there isn't much coverage in Newcastle is there? :)
Or else you just don't read the "right" papers! ;)
 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by John Drak » Thu, 28 Aug 1997 04:00:00



Quote:

> >         The second point of the SL allocating system I don't agree
> > with is
> > the decision to play finals matches at each sides actual home ground.

> Well, if you can remember, the ARL has the best football stadiums in
> Sydney. Easts play at the SFS and Parra plays at the PS.
Therefore, the
> only stadiums that Super League have to utilise, is their own club
> grounds. Until the Olympic stadium is built, and unless Super League
> stages games at big capacity stadiums like Waratah Stadium, they have to
> use their Sydney clubs' grounds.

I thought the SFS was a municipal stadium, rather than one owned and
controlled by the ARL? The SL played Tri Series there, and it stages RU and
soccer games too, so how could it be a problem to play one or more of the
Finals series there? Only reason I can imagine SL are avoiding it is a
possible difficulty with filling it (by the way, that's not a pro or anti
SL comment folks, just an observation!).

John

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Brett Glasso » Fri, 29 Aug 1997 04:00:00

Quote:

> Well, if you can remember, the ARL has the best football stadiums in
> Sydney. Easts play at the SFS and Parra plays at the PS.
> Therefore, the only stadiums that Super League have to utilise, is their own club
> grounds. Until the Olympic stadium is built, and unless Super League
> stages games at big capacity stadiums like Waratah Stadium, they have to
> use their Sydney clubs' grounds.


Quote:
> I thought the SFS was a municipal stadium, rather than one owned and
> controlled by the ARL? The SL played Tri Series there, and it stages RU and
> soccer games too, so how could it be a problem to play one or more of the
> Finals series there? Only reason I can imagine SL are avoiding it is a
> possible difficulty with filling it (by the way, that's not a pro or anti
> SL comment folks, just an observation!).

I think you have hit the nail dead set centre on the head there. The sight of the SFS with 15K
people in it for a semi-final would not look too impressive.

Cheers
Brett

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Leigh Gillespi » Fri, 29 Aug 1997 04:00:00

Quote:

> Well, if you can remember, the ARL has the best football stadiums in
> Sydney. Easts play at the SFS and Parra plays at the PS. Therefore, the
> only stadiums that Super League have to utilise, is their own club
> grounds. Until the Olympic stadium is built, and unless Super League
> stages games at big capacity stadiums like Waratah Stadium, they have to
> use their Sydney clubs' grounds. I personally think that these
> semi-finals should be played at home. If you played a semi-final at lets
> say, Waratah Stadium, both teams in that game would not have an
> advantage, and I do think that Cronulla and Canterbury should have an
> advantage, because they are the higher of the other clubs in their
> corresponding matches.

        As I have said elsewhere IMO should have the advantage if
they finish above their opponents or have performed better during the
finals. Not neccessarily the home ground advantage but the home town/crowd
advantage. In that case with Cronulla playing Canberra if it were played
at the SFS then Cronulla would still have the advantage because it could
reasonably be expected that the crowd would almost entirely be Sharks
supporters, as it is in their city. In the case of Canterbury and Penrith,
as both sides are from Sydney it could reasonably be expected that both
clubs will have a fair representation of support no matter where the match
is played in Sydney.
        If you played the matches at Waratah Stadium the effect would be
no different. Cronulla would still have the home crowd advantage in their
game and Canterbury and Penrith would both still get reasoanable support
both ways. The difference is the standard of venue. Both in terms of
capacity and level of facilities. At the present point in time IMO there
are only two venues in Sydney up to the standard required for major games,
the SFS and Parra Stadium. When the Olympic Stadium is completed then
there will be a third. The other suburban grounds are arguably accepatable
for regular season club games but certainly not for the bigger crowds and
the greater demands of finals football, origin and test matches.
        As for whether the SFS is available to SL, there can be no doubt
that it is. SL's opening Monday night match (between Cronulla and Canberra
no less - exactly the situation I am proposing) was played there, the
Australia v New Zealand "test" match was played there and the opening Tri
Series match was played there. The ARL will be using the SFS on Saturday
and Sunday afternoons for the second, third and fourth weekends of the SL
finals. There is absolutely no reason why SL could not use the venue for
it's Monday night finals matches. The SL draw originally scheduled the
Monday night games for the first two weeks of the finals at the SFS. This
weekend when there are two finals in Sydney it is also available on
Saturday night. There is no reason why Cronulla vs Canberra could not be
played at the SFS this Saturday night, the ARL Sydney City vs Norths on
Sunday afternoon and then Canterbury vs Penrith on Monday night. Only a SL
decision not to do things that way has prevented that from happening. IMO
the use of suburban grounds is the wrong way to go.

Catchya round, Leigh

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
* Leigh T. Gillespie                  *    "It takes leather balls      *
* Phone - Australia (077) 791219      *     to play Rugby!"             *

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Leigh Gillespi » Fri, 29 Aug 1997 04:00:00


Quote:


>>> Well, if you can remember, the ARL has the best football stadiums in
>>> Sydney. Easts play at the SFS and Parra plays at the PS.
>>> Therefore, the only stadiums that Super League have to utilise, is
>>> their own club grounds. Until the Olympic stadium is built, and unless
>>> Super League stages games at big capacity stadiums like Waratah
>>> Stadium, they have to use their Sydney clubs' grounds.

>> I thought the SFS was a municipal stadium, rather than one owned and
>> controlled by the ARL? The SL played Tri Series there, and it stages RU and
>> soccer games too, so how could it be a problem to play one or more of the
>> Finals series there? Only reason I can imagine SL are avoiding it is a
>> possible difficulty with filling it (by the way, that's not a pro or anti
>> SL comment folks, just an observation!).

> I think you have hit the nail dead set centre on the head there. The
> sight of the SFS with 15K people in it for a semi-final would not look
> too impressive.

        Historically under the five team semi final system crowds for the
first weekend have tended to fall between 15,000 and 30,000 and averaged
around the mid to low 20,000's. The sight of 15,000 people in the SFS or
the SCG has never persuaded the administrators to move the matches from
those venues. IMO had the respective SL matches been played at the SFS
then they would have drawn crowds in line with historical trends. As it is
the matches may still draw in line with those trends - one crowd of around
22,000 and another of about 17,000 would not be terribly abnormal. The
crowds for the preliminary semis under the five team finals format for the
period 1973 to 1990 (if anyone has the figures for 1991 - 1994 could you
please post them) with minor final first were...

1973 - 17,778  37,778           1982 - 21,167  24,690
1974 - 26,276  23,600           1983 - 24,652  22,311
1975 - 19,312  23,492           1984 - 15,801  25,675
1976 - 27,203  28,264           1985 - 18,939  25,194
1977 - 20,716  28,288           1986 - 17,597  24,573
1978 - 24,967  17,718           1987 - 22,134  15,852
1979 - 22,104  28,335           1988 - 25,327  19,259
1980 - 33,552  21,948           1989 - 18,186  29,508
1981 - 21,635  17,265           1990 - 30,965  24,409

Average Minor Preliminary Semi Final Crowd - 22,684
Average Major Preliminary Semi Final Crowd - 22,916

Average Preliminary Semi Final Crowd - 22,800

Catchya round, Leigh

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
* Leigh T. Gillespie                  *    "It takes leather balls      *
* Phone - Australia (077) 791219      *     to play Rugby!"             *

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Chris Gate » Sun, 31 Aug 1997 04:00:00



Quote:



>> would have normally be not watched (ie the reserves & u-19's) to be
>> showcased.....the reserve game between Perth & Nth Qld (2 vs. 3) is being
>> played in townsville this weekend as the main attraction, and they'll
>> probably get 15000-20000.

I only became aware of this in the lat couple of days. A great idea
IMO. However I can't agree with the criteria for ground allocation.
Your "2 vs. 3)"is in the correct order - ie Perth finished second on
the ladder. However SL in their wisdom decided there would probably be
a bigger crowd in Townsville. Is profit a valid motive at finals time?
What happens should Perth win this week but lose to Auckland
and have to play NQ again in a  later final? Should such a match be
allocated to the WACA on 13 Sept I would expect 10-15000.

Chris.

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Greg Pankhur » Tue, 02 Sep 1997 04:00:00



:

:>
:>>> would have normally be not watched (ie the reserves & u-19's) to be
:>>> showcased.....the reserve game between Perth & Nth Qld (2 vs. 3) is being
:>>> played in townsville this weekend as the main attraction, and they'll
:>>> probably get 15000-20000.
:>
:> I only became aware of this in the lat couple of days. A great idea
:> IMO. However I can't agree with the criteria for ground allocation.
:> Your "2 vs. 3)"is in the correct order - ie Perth finished second on
:> the ladder. However SL in their wisdom decided there would probably be
:> a bigger crowd in Townsville. Is profit a valid motive at finals time?
:> What happens should Perth win this week but lose to Auckland
:> and have to play NQ again in a  later final? Should such a match be
:> allocated to the WACA on 13 Sept I would expect 10-15000.
:
:        It gets deeper. According to today's (Saturday - still got to
:get to bed) Townsville Bulletin, the Cowboys will be back at Stockland
:Stadium next weekend win lose or draw against the Reds. The point was not
:expanded on any further than that. I doubt that it was a SL directive that
:the matches be played at Stockland Stadium but more the choice of the home
:side (ie. Perth this week and Canterbury next week if the Cowboys win). It
:is well known the expenses involved with the Reds hosting matches at the
:WACA, it is also a ground they have no control over (ie. after their
:twelve scheduled home games were up there is no way to ensure availability
:post season) and it is doubtful the amount of paying crowd support they'd
:get for solely a reserve grade game in a non RL town (and one which hasn't
:drawn too well all season for first grade even). Logistically and
:economically it probably just wasn't worth it. Playing the match in a
:neutral city most likely would've made the situation even worse so from an
:off field POV it just made sense to play it in Townsville.

it comes back to the hunger of the Cowboys crowd....the reserves have
enjoyed massive support in Townsville.  i'd say anywhere from 60% of the
first-grade crowd are there for the entire duration of the reserves, and
the crowd is very much into it.

i acknowledge the game should have been held in Perth based on the
standings, though like Leigh, i seriously doubt any other crowd would
respond to a reserve grade match.
_____________________________________________________________________

PhD Student                                   Phone: + 61 2 9351 3905
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Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Greg Pankhur » Tue, 02 Sep 1997 04:00:00




:
:<SNIP>
:
:> i can't understand how SL allowing games to be played at teams' home
:> grounds is being twisted into some weakness on their part....it's a great
:> concept. firstly it provides the higher finishing team with a significant
:> advantage for the game which they've earned throughout the season.  it used
:> to suck how one of the regional clubs would qualify well and have to walk
:> into the opponent's backyard for the final series.
:
:Play the game in the home city, by all means, it sort of devalues the
spectacle :somewhat when a
:game is played in a suburban ground that *might* hold 30K people in a
pinch. I :guess SL are
:lucky that the Mariner's didn't make the finals.

i seriously doubt it "devalues" the game

:> secondly it also allows for games to be taken to regions where the finals
:> wouldn't normally be played. finals games at townsville, newcastle,
:> adelaide, etc will only be good for footy.  it's also allowed games which
:
:Agreed. However, the original post was referring to the finals in Sydney.
Let :me ask you a
:question Greg. If SL thought for a minute that they could attract 40-50K
to a :final in Sydney
:(which they obviously don't), would they still want to hold the matches in
a :suburban ground
:that *might* hold 30K in a pinch?

i dunno. they may well.....the ARL plays one of its games at Parramatta
Stadium though, which while being a good facility holds significantly less
than the SFS.  maybe both sides realise there's sometimes more important
things than getting another few thousand punters in.

:> would have normally be not watched (ie the reserves & u-19's) to be
:> showcased.....the reserve game between Perth & Nth Qld (2 vs. 3) is being
:> played in townsville this weekend as the main attraction, and they'll
:> probably get 15000-20000.
:>
:> as to people not getting to see the games at the smaller grounds, it's
:> quite frankly somewhat of a chestnut.  if anyone is prepared to but even
:> the slightest amount of forethought into their life, they'll be able to
:> call ticketek and buy a seat.  
:
:I never implied that people would miss out due to the small grounds,
exactly :the opposite in
:fact.

this was a response to a comment made in another post in this thread (maybe
Leigh?)

Greg

_____________________________________________________________________

PhD Student                                   Phone: + 61 2 9351 3905
Biochemistry Department                         Fax: + 61 2 9351 4726
University of Sydney  NSW 2006  Australia
_____________________________________________________________________
   Keep an open mind, though not so open that your brain falls out
_____________________________________________________________________

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by RICHARD ADAMSO » Tue, 02 Sep 1997 04:00:00

Quote:





> >> would have normally be not watched (ie the reserves & u-19's) to be
> >> showcased.....the reserve game between Perth & Nth Qld (2 vs. 3) is being
> >> played in townsville this weekend as the main attraction, and they'll
> >> probably get 15000-20000.

> I only became aware of this in the lat couple of days. A great idea
> IMO. However I can't agree with the criteria for ground allocation.
> Your "2 vs. 3)"is in the correct order - ie Perth finished second on
> the ladder. However SL in their wisdom decided there would probably be
> a bigger crowd in Townsville. Is profit a valid motive at finals time?
> What happens should Perth win this week but lose to Auckland
> and have to play NQ again in a  later final? Should such a match be
> allocated to the WACA on 13 Sept I would expect 10-15000.

> Chris.

I'm sorry, you expect 15000 people to a reserve grade semi??  are you
serious? do you mean 1000-1500???

--


Brisbane, Australia

"Life is just one damned thing after another" - Frank Ward O'Malley

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Brett Glasso » Tue, 02 Sep 1997 04:00:00



Quote:
> > i can't understand how SL allowing games to be played at teams' home
> > grounds is being twisted into some weakness on their part....it's a great
> > concept. firstly it provides the higher finishing team with a significant
> > advantage for the game which they've earned throughout the season.  it used
> > to suck how one of the regional clubs would qualify well and have to walk
> > into the opponent's backyard for the final series.

> Play the game in the home city, by all means, it sort of devalues the
> spectacle :somewhat when a game is played in a suburban ground that
> *might* hold 30K people in a
> pinch. I :guess SL are lucky that the Mariner's didn't make the finals.

> i seriously doubt it "devalues" the game

The "spectacle", not the game.

Quote:
> :> secondly it also allows for games to be taken to regions where the finals
> :> wouldn't normally be played. finals games at townsville, newcastle,
> :> adelaide, etc will only be good for footy.  it's also allowed games which
> :
> :Agreed. However, the original post was referring to the finals in Sydney.
> :Let :me ask you a:question Greg. If SL thought for a minute that they could
> :attract 40-50K to a :final in Sydney (which they obviously don't), would they
> :still want to hold the matches in a suburban ground that *might* hold 30K in
> :a pinch?

> i dunno. they may well.....the ARL plays one of its games at Parramatta
> Stadium though, which while being a good facility holds significantly less
> than the SFS.  maybe both sides realise there's sometimes more important
> things than getting another few thousand punters in.

Parramatta is a top class stadium, although I have no idea how many people it holds, but I
assume that if it is big enough for a Micheal Jackson concert, it is big enough for anything.
It is also located at the geographic and demographic centre of Sydney. I suggest that this is
the main reason for this decision.

<SNIP>

Cheers
Brett

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Greg Pankhur » Wed, 03 Sep 1997 04:00:00




:
:> :> secondly it also allows for games to be taken to regions where the finals
:> :> wouldn't normally be played. finals games at townsville, newcastle,
:> :> adelaide, etc will only be good for footy.  it's also allowed games which
:> :
:> :Agreed. However, the original post was referring to the finals in Sydney.
:> :Let :me ask you a:question Greg. If SL thought for a minute that they could
:> :attract 40-50K to a :final in Sydney (which they obviously don't), would
:> :they
:> :still want to hold the matches in a suburban ground that *might* hold
30K in
:> :a pinch?
:>
:> i dunno. they may well.....the ARL plays one of its games at Parramatta
:> Stadium though, which while being a good facility holds significantly less
:> than the SFS.  maybe both sides realise there's sometimes more important
:> things than getting another few thousand punters in.
:
:
:Parramatta is a top class stadium, although I have no idea how many people
it :holds

i doubt there's ever been much more than 30K in Parra stadium for football.  

:but I
:assume that if it is big enough for a Micheal Jackson concert, it is big
enough :for anything.
:It is also located at the geographic and demographic centre of Sydney. I
:suggest that this is
:the main reason for this decision.

exactlt. there are good reasons for holding matches at Parra Stadium,
despite it not being the biggest/best stadium available.  Similarly there
are good reasons for having matches at Cronulla, etc, despite not being the
biggest/best venue.

Greg
_____________________________________________________________________

PhD Student                                   Phone: + 61 2 9351 3905
Biochemistry Department                         Fax: + 61 2 9351 4726
University of Sydney  NSW 2006  Australia
_____________________________________________________________________
   Keep an open mind, though not so open that your brain falls out
_____________________________________________________________________

 
 
 

Telstra Cup - Preliminary Semi Finals Draw

Post by Brett Glasso » Fri, 05 Sep 1997 04:00:00



<SNIP>

Quote:
> :> i dunno. they may well.....the ARL plays one of its games at Parramatta
> :> Stadium though, which while being a good facility holds significantly less
> :> than the SFS.  maybe both sides realise there's sometimes more important
> :> things than getting another few thousand punters in.
> :
> :Parramatta is a top class stadium, although I have no idea how many people
> it :holds

> i doubt there's ever been much more than 30K in Parra stadium for football.  

And your point is?

Quote:
> :but I
> :assume that if it is big enough for a Micheal Jackson concert, it is big
> enough :for anything.
> :It is also located at the geographic and demographic centre of Sydney. I
> :suggest that this is
> :the main reason for this decision.

> exactlt. there are good reasons for holding matches at Parra Stadium,
> despite it not being the biggest/best stadium available.  Similarly there
> are good reasons for having matches at Cronulla, etc, despite not being the
> biggest/best venue.

I don't think you can seriously compare Parramatta Stadium with Shark Park can you? One is
definitely a suburban style ground, while the other is a true stadium. Since the key word was
"spectacle" . . . . .

Cheers
Brett