It’s time to unleash the Northern Territory in our national sporting competitions

BigJ Roar Guru

By BigJ, BigJ is a Roar Guru

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    Living in the Northern Territory has plenty of advantages – stunning sunrises and sunsets, Uluru, the gateway to the past and a beautiful culture. There is just one thing missing: a national sports team.

    Every other capital city around Australia, including Canberra in our other territory, has at least one senior professional sporting team – but the top end never has.

    So, the logical question that has to be asked is why not? Why shouldn’t the Northern Territory and Darwin, in particular, have a top-level professional sporting team?

    The Territory is an untapped resource for sport and there are great rewards to be had for whoever can turn that proverbial tap on. A few weeks ago, I asked the question of whether rugby league’s Queensland Cup should expand into the Northern Territory and a positive response was unanimous.

    So why not go one step further and get a national sports team up here? This is 2017 so the excuse that Darwin is too far away does not wash anymore.

    Perth is, in fact, further away from the eastern seaboard by plane than Darwin and the Western Australian capital now has four teams in three competitions – The West Coast Eagles and Fremantle Dockers in the AFL, the Perth Scorchers in the Big Bash League and Perth Glory in the A-League.

    Granted, Perth has a bigger population than Darwin but that argument doesn’t have a leg to stand on either given the North Queensland Cowboys have been in Townsville for over two decades. Their population was only 80,000 when they were admitted to the NRL 1995 and since then, they have also had NBL and A-League teams.

    Even though both have folded, they were still there.

    Speaking of which, the NBL along with the Big Bash would probably be the best options for a national team in Darwin. Basketball is quite big in the capital and being an indoor sport, the wet season would not affect any games.

    Cricket would also make a strong push into Darwin as it has the facilities and public interest.

    With the population almost at 150,000 people and with plenty of people with cash to spare who don’t like boating, camping or fishing, this is really a gold mine waiting to be found.

    Tell me Roarers, what do you think of Darwin getting a national sports team?

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    The Crowd Says (31)

    • May 19th 2017 @ 6:41am
      Gurudoright said | May 19th 2017 @ 6:41am | ! Report

      I love the passion but can you answer something?Isn’t it the wet season in Darwin during the majority of the cricket and soccer seasons meaning most cricket games being washed out and soccer not being played in ideal conditions like a flooded waterlogged ground?

      • Roar Guru

        May 19th 2017 @ 7:17am
        The Bush said | May 19th 2017 @ 7:17am | ! Report

        Yeah the weather I would have thought is the biggest hurdle to cricket…

        Before the BBL started, I was an advocate for an eight team competition, but with Canberra and Darwin as the new teams added to the existing state teams. Now, I dunno, hard to argue against the current success.

      • May 19th 2017 @ 8:49am
        pauly said | May 19th 2017 @ 8:49am | ! Report

        I think football might be able to work if the ground had adequate drainage and fans were given shelter. The population however is quite small and itinerant, and the economy there is very much boom-bust. Similar to Townsville actually, no coincidence that the slowdown in mining and the demise of the Townsville Crocodiles happened at the same time.

        • Roar Guru

          May 19th 2017 @ 10:31am
          BigJ said | May 19th 2017 @ 10:31am | ! Report

          The Demise of the Crocs was about five years coming

      • Roar Guru

        May 19th 2017 @ 12:34pm
        BigJ said | May 19th 2017 @ 12:34pm | ! Report

        Soocer at night could possibly work as it does really rain early evening, during the wet season its run around 3 for a 45minute shower ansd then is clear again by five.

    • May 19th 2017 @ 9:33am
      Jeff dustby said | May 19th 2017 @ 9:33am | ! Report

      It’s time for you to learn about population and finances

      • Roar Guru

        May 19th 2017 @ 10:31am
        BigJ said | May 19th 2017 @ 10:31am | ! Report

        I have, already have the Treasure on to looking in to getting a league team here.

    • May 19th 2017 @ 9:40am
      DH said | May 19th 2017 @ 9:40am | ! Report

      Haha. Cricket.

      When I lived in Cairns, watching cricketers spend every Saturday standing under shelter watching the second half of every Saturday get rained out was like watching some bizarre art performance.

      Every Saturday they turned up and every Saturday afternoon it bucketed down.

      Plus, they pay AFL during the wet season in Darwin, I assume they pay cricket in the dry season (southern Winter)?

    • May 19th 2017 @ 10:21am
      me too said | May 19th 2017 @ 10:21am | ! Report

      The Nt did have a team in the old Claxton Shield national baseball comp. But everyone had poor crowds to that, so the comp was run on a shoestring budget. The reality is the bigger comps require vastly more money in admin and player salaries. No way could a Territory team pay for itself in a top tier professional comp.

    • Roar Guru

      May 19th 2017 @ 11:12am
      Scott Pryde said | May 19th 2017 @ 11:12am | ! Report

      I really do think an NBL team could work in Darwin, and it’s something that has been proposed before.

      I’m unsure outdoor sports would ever work, simply because of the weather but Basketball is a sport that must look at expansion into the NT – it’s something that has been mentioned before, and I reckon you would go close to selling out just about every game.

      • Roar Guru

        May 19th 2017 @ 11:42am
        BigJ said | May 19th 2017 @ 11:42am | ! Report

        I think it is the best option due tot he weather restrictions, and basketball is rather big up here.

    • May 19th 2017 @ 11:19am
      bearfax said | May 19th 2017 @ 11:19am | ! Report

      I agree the Northern Territory should be included in national sporting competitions. But I also think it should be given statehood before its sold off to another country.

      • Roar Guru

        May 19th 2017 @ 11:40am
        BigJ said | May 19th 2017 @ 11:40am | ! Report

        Serioulsy aint no one going to by the Territory, well maybe China, but I agree statehood the Territory rename Northern Australia, maybe.

        • Roar Guru

          May 24th 2017 @ 6:18pm
          sheek said | May 24th 2017 @ 6:18pm | ! Report

          If I remember correctly, around the time of the Republican referendum in 1998, NTers was asked if they wanted statehood & they said “no”.

          They were also canvassed their thoughts for a new state name.

          Interestingly, a majority of Territorians opted for the name Northern Territory to remain even if it became a state!

          I would also like another state in North-West Australia (Kimberly-Pilbara regions) but I doubt the WA govt would like the idea.

          I would suggest New Holland as a possible state name in honour of the name that the entire content was briefly known as back around the mid 1600s to early 1800s.

          But I also appreciate the indigenous population would opt for an indigenous name.

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