World News – AU – Congratulations to the AFL but remember the Melburnians had the toughest gig ever


Spend any time in Queensland over the past 100 days and you could be forgiven if you forget the world is in the middle of a pandemic

Regardless of the restrictions placed on residents of the Sunshine State, the practical impact on their lives seems minimal

On weekends the trails and beaches get very busy and at 10 p.m. the line up outside the nightclubs on Surfers Paradise’s Orchid Avenue looks like a scrum

The restrictions appear particularly loose compared to the rules imposed on Melbourne residents since Victorian clubs entered hubs in July after the second wave hit the state

This is unsafe for anyone who has temporarily relocated, with permission from the Government of Queensland, to be with family or to gamble, report, officiate or administer gambling from within the state after 14 days of quarantine, even those who live under AFL protocols, which minimizes their activity to the essential

The environment increases the chances that there is a disconnect between the words used by the AFL in Queensland to describe the enormous effort it took to end the season and how they are received by those who endured the lockdown in the heart of the country

The negative reaction to the transport of the grass from the MCG to the Gabba – a sponsor came up with the idea and bore the full cost – showed the danger of the symbolism and the goal of the Victorian Minister of Racing this week by report to the crowd showed that sport should remember its place right now

There were hints of potential missteps on Brownlow’s medal night, when players and their families were praised for the huge sacrifices they made to keep the season going.

Recently, more than one player from more than one club reminded everyone that they have accumulated 100 days away from home, as if they are on a mission

Under normal circumstances all of this rhetoric is fair enough as everyone understands that life has been disrupted and it has not been an easy time for players and club officials, especially with a lot of people. likely to have experienced family related hardships we’ll never know from and soldier in Hell, players had babies on the road

And the AFL did a great job under difficult circumstances to end the season with a premier

But it’s important for AFL and club members to remember that no one in Melbourne really wants to hear about the sacrifices made by those who have been to Queensland because – whether the perception is right or not – most Melburnians suspect them at club hubs have had a better time than them in the past 100 days

For the most part, football has been a welcome distraction rather than a total salvation in the most difficult year many have seen

On Saturday, the people of Melbourne will feel deeply what is missing as their traditional gatherings for the big last day are limited during a winter, and now spring, with no contact with loved ones No one except AFL players has played football in the state for a long time now

Everyone, including those involved in the AFL, has heard or experienced first-hand heartbreaking stories of people not being able to visit loved ones in hospital or attend funerals and the gamut of emotions that such a reality sparks People face an uncertain future and health workers have been true heroes

What might be best for the AFL to communicate – rather than anything with a hint of self-congratulation – is their appreciation for the sacrifices the Melburnians have made in trying to bring the pandemic under control and their support continuous and passionate about their teams via television

And an offer that when those leading the competition return to Victoria, they will join football fans with renewed energy in its struggle to create a strong sense of community as 2021 approaches, investing – as they do. are at an increased pace – in the important role that community football can play in achieving this

If they keep this thought in the foreground, the Victorians will embrace and respect those in football who packed their bags and distracted everyone when they needed it most.

Denis Pagan said it best when he said, basically if you’re good someone will tell you It will serve well for clubs and the AFL to remember that

Peter Ryan is a sports journalist with The Age covering AFL, horse racing and other sports

Australian Football League, Melbourne Cricket Ground, AFL Grand Final, The Gabba, Geelong Football Club, Brisbane Lions, Richmond Football Club

World News – UA – Congratulations to AFL but remember, Melburnians had the toughest gig ever



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