If someone from another country moved to the US and then was offered tickets to the Superbowl, they would be CRAZY to pass them up. So, when I was graciously offered a spare ticket to the NRL Grand Final, which is the Australian “equivalent” to the Superbowl (only it’s rugby), I just had to say yes!!

To get a feel for the Grand Final, just imagine the Superbowl without big name bands, fancy stages, celebrities, wardrobe malfunctions, thousands of hired performers, etc. Instead… think of pre-game musical performances assisted by jean wearing teenagers banging BBQ lids moderately in sync with the drums (imagine STOMP, aussie style).

It was pretty cool to see The Living End though… I was happy that there was a band performing that I’d actually heard of (even if they did only sing 2 songs). Oh and I’ll add that the Cat in the Hat BBQ girls were not accompanying The Living End. Instead, they had some other teens in white shirts with white pom poms dancing to their new hit “White Noise.” Clever, right? (It was almost as cool as Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson).

A bit more about the game: It was held at Olympic Park (home of the 2000 olympics) and it was Melbourne against Manly. Melbourne got SLAMMED which was a good thing for me considering I decided the night before that I wanted to cheer for Manly… (i.e. I asked Andrew “Who do I want to win?”). The game itself was really fun and half time came VERY quickly. I’m sure the 5 beers I drank added to the speed and thrill of the game. I really don’t even think there was a halftime show. If there was- it definitely wasn’t loud and exciting enough for us to hear from the bathroom and beer lines!

Rugby is not nearly as boring as US football because it doesn’t start and stop 234982734 times, it just keeps going no matter what happens! Plus they don’t wear padding so it’s always more entertaining to watch them slam into each other and then just get up and walk away. I’m amazed they don’t kill at least one player during each game.


Good times were had by all, and now that I’ve had my yearly dose of football, I can return to my normally scheduled sports-loathing self. Thanks so much to Natasha for inviting me along to experience some real Aussie culture!

There are some more pictures HERE if anyone is interested.

5 thoughts on “NRL Grand Final 2008”

  1. Although I’m not a huge fan of Australia’s international rugby team, the Wallabies, I would still go and watch for my love of rugby. Consider yourself lucky to be able to go…if only I had more money!

  2. I was on the Alaska Yukon border in 1989 watching the AFL grand final. One old lady shouted “Hey Doris. Ya gotta get in here and watch this ! They ain’t got no padding on !!!”

    It was very funny to see it from a different perspective.

    Glad you enjoyed yr day.

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