What was it like being back at Adelaide Oval for a full capacity Showdown? Well, let me tell you…(Image source: Port Adelaide Football Club)
By Alexandra Bull | @ally_bull19
It has been a long time coming, but Adelaide Oval is finally back at full capacity and there was no better game to welcome back larger crowds than Showdown 49.
A crowd of just over 43,000 was the largest number at the Oval since pre COVID-19, making for an excellent display of electric atmosphere, helped by supporters of both teams.
Port Power member, Zachary Bastick, was impressed by just how loud the crowd was, as it had been a long time since Adelaide Oval was at maximum capacity.
“The atmosphere was amazing, especially at the start when Port ran out and when we sang Never Tear Us Apart,” he said.
“It was the first time in over a year since I had heard it so loud.”
With the allowed full capacity, Adelaide Oval was back to its usual atmosphere, helped by both Port and Crows fans.
Most Crows and Port fans have not attended a Showdown since 2019, as last year’s game had a mere crowd of 2,000.
“It was close at half time but when Port started to pull ahead you could hear the chants from all over, not just the cheer squad,” Zachary said.
“As it was the two Adelaide teams, you could also hear the Crows fans cheer when they got a goal, but I think that just fires up the Port fans even more.”
Social distancing measures were still in place, with football goers required to wear a mask when walking around the stadium.
However, this meant the wait time to get into the stadium was slightly longer than usual, leaving some fans waiting up to 25 minutes to enter the Oval.
This wait allowed bonding between strangers who were about to head inside, which is what the football is about. Fans coming together in anticipation, sharing the nervousness of the impeding game, while also discussing their thoughts of the game ahead.
Who is going to take home the Showdown medal? Will Charlie Dixon finally kick a bag tonight? Can Tex back up his early season form?
I am sure all football fans will know there is a sense of comradery between fans, and Saturday night was no different.
While waiting in line with strangers (masked up of course) there were conversations and discussions to be had.
One of the main highlights of AFL, is the interaction with people that share the same love for the team you go for, which is something I experienced while waiting to get to my seat.
I was caught in deep discussion with two fans, trying to help one of them with their tips for the night. Both of whom I had never met before and I will probably never see again, but the sense of friendship and comradery between those fans and I in the line is one of the most special things about football.