Monday 1 February 2016

for the Australian Open

I must confess that for 2 weeks in January I am glued to one channel (ok, so they've added a few more now and you can watch any match live on the app) and waste spend countless hours watching one sport.....yep, The Australian Open Tennis Grand Slam is my January guilty TV pleasure!

I have been a big tennis fan from way back when I used to swing a racket in primary school and every year since I have dreamt about attending the Australian Open and this year I ticked it off my bucket list! 

I started my morning early, heading down to the banks of the Yarra River where the Sunrise crew were broadcasting live. This area is such a hive of activity even as dawn is breaking.

Zita Hooke travel blog

I was in Melbourne for day one of the tournament and could not have asked for a better day. The sun was shining, the fans were out in force and the players were playing some awesome games. I was certainly not disappointed. 

Australian Open 2016

We got there in time for me to see my most favourite player, Novak Djokovic on the practice courts and for my friend to see her favourite player, Rafa Nadal on the practice court beside! Stoked! As it was the first day of action and a beautiful day at that there were people everywhere. We had only purchased a ground pass ticket, just $39, which gave us access to everywhere except the 2 main courts. Hisense Arena, the 3rd biggest court I guess and what has become known as the "People's Court" was where we had decided we wanted to be. Unfortunately so had everyone else, but we joined the queue as for this arena it is a case of first in best dressed and once you are in, you can only get a 30 minute passout. 

Most people had gone to that arena to see one man, Australia's Nick Kyrgios, our 'bad boy of tennis'. He was playing the night game, starting at 7pm but by the look of the lines we knew we had to stake our seats and not move, apart from ducking out to use the facilities and grab some snacks one at a time while the other stood guard over our seats. Fortunately we got an awesome afternoon of tennis with 2 seeded players being bundled out of the tournament by qualifiers who played the games of their lives! 

Australian Open 2016

After the match my friend had to head off but I hung around Melbourne Park to soak up more of the atmosphere and watch another Aussie, Sam Stosur, in action on one of the big screens that are littered around the grounds. She was playing on the main court, Rod Laver Arena, which is a ticketed court. As I sat eating my mexican nachos minding my own business I was approached by a young couple who told me they were heading home but had tickets to Road Laver Arena and wondered if I wanted their ticket so I could head inside...ummmm YES PLEASE

Zita Hooke Blog

After her game I joined the swarms of people to catch the free shuttle tram back to Federation Square and walked the short distance back to my hotel still buzzing about the amazing day I had just had. Definitely a sporting event I would go back to time and time again!

Why not pin it for later!?

Want more Melbourne awesomeness.... Check out my post on Melbourne Street Art

What's your guilty TV pleasure?
Is there a sporting event you've always wanted to attend?

***This post is part of the following linkups***

I Must Confess

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