The Roar
The Roar


Live Sunday arvo footy - have my prayers been answered?

Jamie Soward celebrates during his time with the Panthers. (AAP Image/Action Photographics, Robb Cox)
Roar Guru
18th November, 2014

Finally! After years of complaining, my biggest pet peeve in regards to rugby league has been corrected. Sunday arvo football will now be shown live!

That is, unless you live in Queensland. Even if you do live north of the border, when daylight saving finishes by Round 5, you too will have live Sunday footy.

Channel Nine and the NRL were living in the stone age when it came to Sunday afternoon footy.

There were so many reasons that delayed coverage ruined the game. You couldn’t go on social media for three hours (3pm-6pm) without the score flashing before your eyes.

If you’re in the car, then don’t have the radio on a station that does score updates.

Following your fantasy team along with the game is dangerous as big jumps in points can indicate tries being scored.

You can’t watch it at the pub because some random punter will blurt out the score after he checks his phone. And don’t forget to turn your phone off in case one of your mates sends through a text to let you know his team is beating yours.

All in all, there were so many reasons to have the game on live and only one to keep it on delay – the 6pm news.

Now with the 4pm kickoffs, everyone is happy. Everyone, that is, unless you think a six pm finish to a game is too late for the kids.


In saying that I have seen plenty of kids attend Monday night matches, which finish significantly later – so it shouldn’t be a problem.

There is also the 2pm game each Sunday for those who want their footy finishing a tad earlier.

Earlier in the year, Gus Gould stuck up for the delayed telecast with this tweet “People say going to games too expensive. But when we say Channel 9 is servicing people who can’t afford Pay TV with Free coverage they snort”.

I was upset with this as I attended all of Manly’s Sunday afternoon games in Sydney, regardless of if they were live on Fox or delayed on 9. If Manly played interstate at 3pm on a Sunday, I obviously couldn’t attend. Why then was I forced to watch the game on one hour delay? All this is now rectified.

With more Thursday night footy set for 2015, we may have also seen the end of the delayed Friday night game. This was another pet peeve of mine as I believed that the delayed game on 9 should have been shown live on Gem.

In a day and age when we can watch any sporting code in the world live, why were we forced to watch the game closest to home with one or two hour delays?

Fixing the delayed Sunday afternoon game was at the top of the list of changes I hoped to be made for 2015. Now that this is achieved, it’s time to focus on the others. A video ref bunker, more footy at suburban grounds, a re-configuring of the on report system, Manly in the top eight and more Vossy commentating on TV are all things I hope to see follow this great change into the new year.

Roarers, what are your pet peeves that you hope to be rectified ahead of 2015?