Melbourne in Victoria, Australia, is often selected and acknowledged as the sports capital of the world. Melbourne is 2nd largest city in Australia yet were elected the sports capital of the decade in 2016. The people of Melbourne are generally sports crazy and it makes no difference just what the sports activity is, the crowds in the city turn out for it.
Why then is Melbourne the sporting capital and exactly how did it ended up being the sports capital? To begin with, Melbourne features a vibrant sports history and tradition. The city was initially founded in 1835 and sport was a feature of city life starting from then, with the Melbourne Cricket Club (MCC) being created in 1838. The now iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) opened up in 1853. It is still presently there and is now the biggest sports arena in the country. A variety of football grew to become also popular in the cities beginning years, in due course bringing about its very own sports activity – Australian Rules Football (AFL), or ‘footy’ as it is called by the locals. The first Melbourne Cup horse competition took place in 1861 and is still held. The first Australian tennis championships took place in 1905 and it is still held in Melbourne. Melbourne hosted the 1956 Olympic Games.
Local community sport is really a important part of the the cities way of life and engagement rates in the city are probably the highest globally. This is readily noticed each weekend you will see exactly how dominant local community sporting activities is with people partaking and enjoying a wide range of sporting activities for example cricket, tennis games, footy, rugby, netball, basketball, baseball, golf as well as soccer. They play an important part of so many people’s community lives and wellness. When individuals in Melbourne are not actively playing sport, they're fans of watching sport. The Australian Football League (AFL) grand final draws 100 000 fans to the MCG. Rugby Union is not a well-known or a common sports activity in Melbourne, but Melbourne stills hold the world record for the highest number of fans to attend to watch a game!
In addition to the 1956 Olympic Games, Melbourne will continue to run international sporting events. Each year, they hold the F1 Australian Grand Prix, the Australian Open Tennis Grand Slam, the Spring Racing Carnival, the MotoGP, the Boxing Day cricket test game and the Rip Curl Pro surfing competition. You can find the key AFL, National Rugby League, or Australian A-League (soccer) games on almost all weekends. There have recently been other important one-off events including the Commonwealth Games, the Cricket World Cup, World swimming championships as well as Asian Cup soccer.
All this is sustained by lots of world class sports facilities like the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre, Melbourne Park, Rod Laver Arena, AAMI Park, Hisense Arena, Etihad Stadium, Flemington Racecourse, State Netball and Hockey Centre, Margaret Court Arena and the Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit which is an infrastructure that is not near to being surpassed by any other location in the world. You can easily observe how and exactly why Melbourne stands out as the sports capital of the world and the reason why sport is such a part of the life style in Australia.