Sport isn’t about feelings or impressions; it’s about cold hard facts.
For example, Essendon defeated Hawthorn in the 1985 VFL grand final. That’s a fact. Dirk Wellham scored 103 on his Test debut at The Oval in 1981 is another one. Sport is full of facts, and it behooves us as sports fans to accept and embrace them.
With that in mind, here are some solid, irrefutable facts about sport that every sport lover should know. I do not submit these for discussion; they are here for you to learn, agree with and internalise. Educate yourself.
The solutions to the problems plaguing Rugby AU will be difficult and complex, but it is certain that they do not involve Alan Jones in any way.
Twenty20 cricket is nowhere near as good as Test cricket and never will be.
Men who feel the need to publicly announce, unprovoked, that they don’t watch women’s sport are locked in a ceaseless battle to prevent themselves being swallowed up by the vast well of sadness that dwells within them.
The Sydney Roosters are inherently unlikeable.
Mankads are absolutely fine and bowlers should be encouraged to perform them at every opportunity. Anyone who says they are unsportsmanlike is a big fat crybaby.
Michael Hooper would be better on the wing.
The Waratahs are doing it on purpose.
Nick Kyrgios is a pretty fun guy.
AFLW games are worth paying for and should charge for tickets next time around.
What sports you like and dislike is purely a matter of subjective personal taste, except for horse racing. Horse racing is awful.
Josh Dugan is slowly turning into Andrew Fifita.
The haircuts in the NRL this year are the worst they have ever been.
Sportsmen who think it’s no big deal to suffer repeated head trauma are a bit weird.
Being suspended for 12 months means after 12 months you get to play again without being told that you ‘owe the public’ something more.
The Western Bulldogs are probably the AFL team you’d most like to go camping with.
Day grand finals are better than night grand finals. The NRL grand final is worse at night. The AFL grand final will be worse if it ever moves to the night.
It is perfectly reasonable, going by recent history, to conclude that NRL coaches are mostly jerks.
Basketball is okay. But don’t get carried away.
We are paying nowhere near enough attention to Ash Barty.
Rugby union needs to introduce mandatory yellow cards for penalties conceded inside one’s own 22.
Rugby league needs to introduce contested play-the-balls.
Aussie Rules needs to introduce half of every TV commentary team to unemployment.
Footy ground hot dogs are usually better than footy ground pies.
The best sporting publicity campaign ever was rugby league’s 1989 campaign featuring Tina Turner’s What You Get Is What You See. They should bring that back. For every sport.
Netballers should be allowed to run all over the court whatever their position.
Professional sportspeople are almost always pretty damn sexy.
God doesn’t care who wins any sporting contest and He never will, so you can stop all that praying stuff.
The Footy Show has been dead for five years and somebody needs to inform Channel Nine of the fact.
Again, Ash Barty.
Sportspeople smiling and joking with opponents after a defeat is a sign of good sportsmanship and a healthy sense of perspective, and should be applauded.
Ben Pobjie is a writer and comedian whose promising rugby career was tragically cut short the day he stopped playing rugby and had a pizza instead. The most he has ever cried was the day Balmain lost the 1989 grand final. Today he enjoys watching Wallabies, Swans, baggy greens, and Storms.