AFL Fails In China Again, As Buses Take 'Fans' To Wrong Stadium
The third AFL match in China was even flatter than the first two.
The official crowd at Jiangwan Stadium in Shanghai for the Port Adelaide vs St Kilda match on the weekend was 9,412 -- a tiny fraction of the city's 26.3 million residents, and to many eyes, a very generous count.
Put it this way: the stadium's capacity for AFL matches is listed as 11,000. Does this look 85 percent full to you?
Whatever the actual crowd number, what we can say for sure is that there were many empty seats.
There was a problem which apparently contributed to the low crowd, which is that one of the sponsors bused in 400 people to the wrong stadium.
But overall, the game's faithful in Australia are still strongly questioning why the AFL persists with its China experiment.
Last November the AFL extended its commitment to play there through to 2021. Why exactly? No one knows.
Given that the GWS Giants -- who sit second on the ladder at the halfway mark of the season -- attracted just 7,581 to their home game this weekend, many are putting forward the opinion that the AFL should concentrate its expansionist energies on colonising foreign territories much closer to home.
Meanwhile in the actual footy match in China, Port Adelaide won easily.