Crowds & Fixturing

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Crowds & Fixturing

Post by scott on Mon Aug 21, 2017 11:00 pm

With one round remaining, I think it's worth reviewing the draw this season and discuss what's gone right, what's gone wrong and what can be done better in the future.

On average, 26 fewer people have attended each match this season compared to 2016 (2,289 vs 2,314), but feel that's more the result of the SANFL shooting itself in the foot.

The program this season was widely considered to be better than last season's, but still not great given last year's was just awful. The SANFL listened to things such as reducing the saturation of Sunday games and inreasing Friday night matches, but should learn a lot from this year too.


Just some of the things I could quickly think of running through the fixture...

Things that worked
* 3,323 - Norwood twilight game v Adelaide in Round 8 or 9. Having attended this match, I thought the atmosphere was strangely good for a Ravens game. The unique 4:10pm start and 6:30pm finish before it got too cold seemed to provide enough incentive for a decent turnout.

* South v Adelaide at Encounter Bay on Easter Sunday. 2,357 turned up, and the ground was chockers. At least 1,000 more than what they would have got at Noarlunga. South should bring one of their games against Adelaide to the GSFL/SFL each season, because they'll struggle to draw over 1,300 at Noarlunga. There's nothing to lose. The Fleurieu area is so big. Capture the interest of the people. ****, take a game to Kangaroo Island.

* 2,000 - South v Port as a standalone Sunday game. A big crowd by South's standards and a far cry from the 980-odd in that diabolically-scheduled corresponding match the year before.

* Norwood playing five Friday night games in the first eight week at an average of almost 3,700 per game. It's not unique, but it works. I'd be great if every round for the first eight or so weeks had a Friday night game.


Things that almost worked
* Round 1 opening with three Friday night matches. Almost half of this season's Friday night matches in one night was a downer. Two's company, three's a crowd (or lack of). Two matches collected over 3,500 each, the other just 1,701 in what was probably a saturation of an otherwise good thing. Stick to the two.

* Glenelg hosting Sturt on Good Friday with 4,799 attending. This was a great result make no mistake, and granted it was 1,500 up on their corresponding clash in a regular timeslot the year before. But South went from having 3,900 v Glenelg on Good Friday last year to 1,600 in a regular time slot this year - a drop of 2,300. People will turn up on Good Friday regardless of opposition, so with all due respect, Glenelg would be better hosting a lower-drawing team such as South on Good Friday and getting a decent crowd, and leave the higher-drawing matches to regular season timeslots that'll get a big crowd anyway. It's win:win. Except for Sturt not playing on Good Friday. At least not against Glenelg.

* 2,906 - North hosting Good Friday against Centrals. Not the worst crowd all things considered, and apparently there was an error in the figures, but given Elizabeth hosted the corresponding game the year before with 4,500, it would have been disappointing.


Things that didn't
* Not related to crowd numbers specifically, but radio. This live stream is great, but isn't going to get people to games. Get the footy back on the radio. People listen to it at the ground & in their cars. Just get it back on.

* Round 13 - four games going directly head-to-head against a Saturday afternoon Port AFL game at Adelaide Oval. An average crowd of 1,651 between those games. If we must have split rounds, this is the perfect round to pick - one game at most on Saturday, and one or two on the Sunday.

* Round 15 (week 2) - AFL Showdown on the Sunday, no free-to-air AFL to compete with on Saturday afternoon. So we've scheduled just two matches for the entire round. If five games should ever be scheduled at exactly the same time, this is the round.

* 1,897 - Glenelg v Norwood as the only Saturday night of the season. Granted, crap conditions didn't help, but it was in the middle of winter.

* 1,348 - Adelaide v Port 'SANFL Showdown' at Woodville. I mean, ****. Take these games to the country. Clare worked. Mannum worked. Woodville didn't. Why not play it as a curtain raiser to an AFL showdown? It'd actually make sense.

* 2,641 - North hosting the Queen's Birthday match. Maybe this is the start of the teams sharing the hosting duties, but this was comfortably the lowest crowd for a Queen's Birthday match as far back as I could be bothered going (2011).

* 1,400 - Bordertown game. All the time, money and effort put into bringing this match to the country was completely undone by pitting it head-to-head with a Crows AFL away game live on Seven. As if Crows supporters don't attend league matches already, there was absolutely no chance this was going to improve it. The Crows AFL team were playing in Melbourne - imagine scheduling this for the Saturday instead. Firstly it's not clashing with their AFL team, and secondly you might entice a bunch of their supporters to the game while on their way over to Melbourne. Yeah it probably would have clashed with the local league and Sunday was the best of a **** sandwich, but then why was it scheduled in this round in the first place?

My two cents...
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scott

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Re: Crowds & Fixturing

Post by scott on Sat Aug 26, 2017 6:44 pm

Donuts.

Oh well.
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Re: Crowds & Fixturing

Post by Lee on Sat Aug 26, 2017 9:38 pm

Just read it, Scott.

Great summary and I hope the SANFL read it and take notice.

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